Getting a divorce can be a complex, lengthy, and emotionally fraught process. Even when couples are on relatively good terms, there’s a lot of time, effort, and work involved. If couples are not on good terms, proceedings can quickly become heated, dragging things out even longer.
No matter your circumstances, you need to be extremely careful during the divorce process to protect your rights, interests, family, and future.
The Indian Land divorce lawyers at McKinney, Tucker & Lemel LLC have many years of experience helping people with divorce issues. For decades, our top Indian Land attorneys have been there to help our clients understand the divorce process and work with them to pursue the best possible outcome.
The end of a marriage can be taxing, but you don’t have to go through it alone. To speak with one of our dedicated and compassionate divorce attorneys, call us today or visit our contact page.
Why You Need a Divorce Attorney in Indian Land, SC
Part of the reason getting a divorce is such a lengthy and detailed process is because there’s a lot at stake. Your shared marital assets have to be divided in an equitable (which does not necessarily mean equal) manner. That process can be contentious. The courts will also determine whether one spouse will pay the other alimony and child support and who will have custody of any children from the marriage.
The terms of your divorce can have a significant impact on your financial future, as well as your ability to spend time with your children. Without help from a knowledgeable divorce lawyer, you run the risk of losing your home, other assets, and the ability to see your children again. But with an attorney representing your interests, you have a much stronger chance of getting an optimal outcome to your divorce.
Contested vs. Uncontested Divorce in SC
There are two different kinds of divorce in South Carolina. In an uncontested divorce, both spouses agree on the terms of the divorce. This includes alimony, child support, visitation rights, custody rights, who will live in the marital home, how assets will be divided, etc. These cases tend to be easier on everyone involved because there are fewer arguments.
If the spouses do not agree on the terms of the divorce, or if one spouse is attempting to divorce without the other spouse’s consent, it’s known as a contested divorce. In a contested divorce, a series of court hearings will be necessary to settle issues such as asset distribution, custody of any children, alimony, and so on. To give yourself the best chance at getting the outcome you want in your divorce case, you’ll want assistance from an experienced divorce lawyer.
What Is the Timeline for Divorce in SC?
The timeline for a divorce in South Carolina depends greatly on what the grounds are for the divorce. That’s mainly because South Carolina has only five legally recognized grounds for divorce. The four at-fault grounds for divorce are:
- Physical abuse
- Habitual drunkenness or drug use
- Abandonment for a year or longer
The last allowable reason for divorce in South Carolina is the no-fault option. This simply requires the spouses to live separately for at least one year.
No-fault divorces often take longer than at-fault divorces in South Carolina because of the one-year waiting period, even though these cases are generally less contentious. In an at-fault divorce case, the party who filed for the divorce can request a final hearing 90 days after filing the initial complaint. The process may be quicker in an at-fault divorce, but it’s also usually harder on the family.
Ultimately, the most significant factor in any divorce case is the relationship between the spouses. If both parties are cordial toward each other and want to get the process done quickly, that can usually happen. If one or both spouses decide they’d rather be challenging and make the proceedings as painful as possible, the case can take much longer. The longer the case goes, the more pain for everyone involved and the more costly it will be.
What to Do If You Are Considering Divorce or Separation in Indian Land, SC
The first step if you’re considering a divorce in South Carolina is to make sure you meet the residency requirements. You can only file for divorce in South Carolina if you’ve lived here for at least one year. If you are not a South Carolina resident, your spouse must be a resident and must have lived here for at least three months.
Once you’ve determined you meet the residency requirements, gather copies of all your important papers. This includes your identifying documents, bank records, pay stubs, tax records, any debts you may have, etc. You’ll also want to compile a list of any shared property you and your spouse own, including your home. These documents are used to help determine how your marital assets will be divided.
It’s a good idea to figure out a short-term living arrangement for yourself and your children before filing for divorce. Think about where you want your children to live and go to school, if you or your spouse will want to leave your marital home, how you will pay your bills if you move out, etc. Having a plan in place will make the process easier for you and your kids.
Talk to a trusted friend or counselor about why you are getting a divorce and your intentions. Having set goals in place and knowing why you’re going through this process will help you make clearer decisions in the trying days ahead.
Get Help Now From Our Indian Land Divorce Lawyers
Going through a divorce is one of the most challenging and emotional experiences people face. There’s a lot of pain and heartache involved, but you can make things easier on yourself by getting help from a compassionate and knowledgeable divorce lawyer.
Get an initial consultation with McKinney, Tucker & Lemel LLC today by calling our office or visiting our contact page. We can help you figure out child support, child custody, alimony, and anything else you’re struggling with during your divorce. We have an expert family law attorney ready to work for you and help you through family court and the divorce process.