Charleston Divorce Attorney – RHB LAW FIRM, LLC
South Carolina has five grounds for divorce. The four “fault grounds” are adultery, habitual drunkenness or drug abuse, physical cruelty, and desertion. Most people these days, regardless of fault, pursue and obtain a “no fault” divorce. That does not mean that fault does not come into play in issues of alimony, property division, child custody, and visitation. One or more of these issues are almost always the real focus of any contested or uncontested divorce.
When one or both spouses are members of the military, different and additional factors come into play, particularly with respect to property division. Even if you agree in principle to the terms of your property division, you need to be careful to make sure that you comply with these rules, and that you do not draft the agreement in such a way as to mistakenly give away something to which you may be entitled. Military retirement benefits, in particular, need to be handled with great care.
You are here because you or a loved one need a Charleston divorce attorney. Call me at (843) 805-4717 or email me at RHB Law Firm, LLC. I am ready to get started when you are.
No-Fault Divorce: One may obtain a “no-fault” divorce by living separate and apart from your spouse for more than one year. The one-year clock starts to run for a no fault divorce on the day that the parties separate. To separate, the parties must actually live apart, in separate homes.
Adultery: Adultery means having sex with someone other than your spouse. One may prove adultery by showing your spouse’s romantic inclination towards a third party and then the opportunity for them to have committed adultery. Evidence must be given by a third party (for example, a private investigator, friend, or colleague) who has personal knowledge of the inclination and opportunity.
Physical Cruelty: Physical cruelty is proven by showing that your spouse’s conduct created a substantial risk of death or serious bodily injury. Again, you will need a witness to corroborate the grounds.
Habitual Drunkenness: A divorce on the grounds of habitual drunkenness or drug abuse is proven by showing that your spouse’s consumption is habitual and has caused the breakdown of your marriage. Evidence to support this cause of action may be medical records, criminal records, third-party observation, driving records, etc.
Desertion: Desertion is rarely ever used as a grounds for divorce these days because the length of time for absence in a desertion claim is the same as the no-fault ground of one year.
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