Attorneys frequently clarify their clients’ understanding about divorce related issues. This can be a sensitive subject for some. If you or a loved one is going through this trying time, here are three common misconceptions people have when it comes to divorce:
It is the judge that grants a divorce, not your spouse
The judge is the one who gives you a divorce, not your husband or wife. To say, “my husband won’t give me a divorce,” is inaccurate.
“The husband and wife are merely parties to the lawsuit,” says Thomas Bumgardner, an attorney with The Law Office of Thomas D. Bumgardner. “Either party can set a hearing on the issue of divorce.” Unless there is a mistake in the complaint or the defendant denies an allegation, the divorce should be granted with no hiccups.
A separation agreement will not slow down the process of divorce in North Carolina
Many people worry that, “we can’t get a divorce yet – we don’t have a legal separation.” All that the statute requires for a complaint for an absolute divorce is living apart for more than one year, concurrent with the intent on the part of at least one of the parties that the separation be permanent. A separation agreement or any other documents will not slow down or speed up the process of divorce in North Carolina. It will probably have many other benefits for the client in terms of setting out understandable and enforceable promises for the spouses. A separation means that the parties have been living under different roofs (not in the same building).
Remember dates throughout the process
As long as the date of separation is more than one year before filing of the action, the divorce will be granted even if the date found by the court upon oral testimony is not the same as the date set out in the complaint.
It is important to remember that the client cannot file for divorce on the exact anniversary of the separation. The date of filing must be, “more than one year,” after the separation of the parties, meaning that at least one year plus a day of separation is required for filling out a divorce complaint. Anything earlier than this is a ticker to dismissal.
Thomas Bumgardner can help you understand the laws of divorce and separation in North Carolina as well as helping you through family situations like this. Please call us for a free consultation at (704) 870-4779. We’re experienced and we’re here to listen to your situation and to offer our professional guidance.