Divorce in South Carolina
Mt. Pleasant Divorce Lawyers to Help You
Getting divorce in South Carolina can be complicated. During a divorce, you need to establish alimony, division of assets, and if children are involved, you need to determine parental responsibilities. The process can become complex if the divorce results in a battle, making the right advocacy imperative.
At Shaw Law Firm, our experienced attorney provides:
- Dynamic advocacy to settle your divorce as swiftly as possible
- Confident and positive representation for each stage of the process
- Astute legal counsel to achieve favorable results
- Quality services and counsel
No two marriages are alike, and neither are the breakups. The length of your relationship, whether there are children involved, and the complexity of your finances all play a part in what type of divorce best suits your needs and how complicated the process becomes. When you need a lawyer to provide supportive legal counsel as you navigate your unique family court proceedings, turn to our firm.
If you need to consult with an attorney, call our office today to schedule your consultation!
What are the Grounds for Divorce in South Carolina?
South Carolina requires you to specify the reason for divorce. Most of these justifications are based on the actions of one or more of the spouses, leading to a fault-based divorce.
The fault-based justifications for divorce are:
- Physical cruelty
- Habitual drunkenness (alcohol or drugs)
In order to be granted a divorce on no-fault grounds (meaning neither party can be blamed), the parties need to prove they have been living apart for one year. However, the court may consider past actions of the spouses when determining custody, alimony and property division. Regardless, it is vital that you have a skilled lawyer on your side.
We can provide the advocacy you need for:
- Collaborative divorce
- Military divorce
- Property division
- Establishment of alimony
- Child custody
- Rights to visitation
- Child support
At Shaw Law Firm, LLC, we don't pursue unreasonable expectations to pad our billable hours, nor do we expect you to relinquish what you are entitled to in order to reach a speedy settlement. Our attorney in Mt. Pleasant provide the strategic representation you need to help you in moving on with your life with as favorable a result as possible.
What is the Divorce Process in South Carolina?
While the “simple divorce” process may seem straightforward, there are few divorces that fall neatly into that bucket. Often, divorces involve disagreements and uncertainty—and it is in your best interest to work with an attorney who can look out for your rights. Below, our firm explains the general process for filing for divorce in the state of South Carolina. If you have further questions, we encourage you to contact us today.
- First, the service of a summons and complaint begins the divorce.
- Upon proper service, the defendant has 30 days to file a formal written response and request other relief.
- If there are any urgent issues, a temporary hearing may be held before the final hearing.
- Mediation will be required before a final hearing can be held if the parties have been unable to reach an agreement
- A guardian ad litem may be appointed to represent the interests of the children born of the marriage
- If parties can settle, an abbreviated hearing will be held by the court.
- If parties cannot settle, a trial will be held for each party to present their evidence.
- After the trial, the judge will determine what relief should be granted.
Except in one-year separation divorces, a two month waiting period is required before a final hearing can be held for the divorce and a three month waiting period is required before the decree can be issued.
Divorce is not an easy situation to face. It is one of the most emotionally complex areas of the law—and it is also one of the most personal. It is easy for someone in the thick of it to forget a step or jump into it too quickly without thinking about getting their ducks in a row. That is where attorneys come in. We have been through the process before, and we know what to expect. When you work with our Charleston divorce law firm, you benefit from our years of legal experience and our education and legal insight.
1) Get a Clear Idea of Your Financial Situation
Divorce will have a profound impact on your finances, and before you begin the process, it is a good idea for you to understand just where you stand. First, you need to have a clear understanding of what you own—such as your home, vehicles, and less tangible assets such as artwork or inheritances. Second, you need to know what you owe, including marital debts and personal debts. We recommend getting a copy of your credit report.
2) Put Together Proof of Your Income
When determining the financial aspects of a divorce, such as alimony and child support, it will be necessary to have proof of income for both you and your spouse. This can be done with copies of recent pay stubs, income tax return, and more. If self-employed, this can be a little more difficult but can be accomplished by getting copies of your most recent bank account and financial business statements. Gather everything that you can.
3) Lay Out Your Budget
Splitting a household, whether single or double income, can mean major changes for your overall budget. You no longer will have the same needs or the same income, and it is a good idea to get a head start on how you are going to pay your bills and handle your finances once the dust has settled on your divorce. Understanding the future financial landscape also gives you an advantage when it comes to negotiating the terms of a divorce.
4) Begin Establishing Personal Credit
Often, divorce couples have spent years working together to build shared credit; however, it can become a major problem post-divorce for an individual who does not have any credit in their name individually. If you are facing a divorce, now is a good time to start building credit slowly. You can do this by getting a credit card in your name alone and using is wisely—slowly building a good credit score without racking up debt.
5) Speak with & Hire a Good Divorce Lawyer
Finally, we recommend that you hire an attorney who you can trust. Take your time and find someone who is not only experienced, but who you feel comfortable with. As we mentioned above, divorce is a highly personal and intensely emotional process, and you want to make sure that you have someone in your corner who will be there for you through every step of the way. By hiring a Charleston lawyer, you can breathe easier knowing that you have a professional to guide you through all of the steps and look out for your rights.
How Long Does it Take to Get a Divorce in South Carolina?
The length of a South Carolina divorce varies depending on a variety of factors. For example, using mediation to get a divorce is typically faster. However, going to family court for your divorce may take longer. Splitting assets and settling custody can take add time depending on what's agreed upon during the divorce process. To learn more about your specific circumstances, schedule a consultation with our Mt. Pleasant divorce lawyers.
Quality Representation Is a Phone Call Away
At Shaw Law Firm, LLC, we firmly believe that every individual confronting a legal difficulty deserves quality representation. We recognize the financial uncertainty that often accompanies the breakup of a marriage. We would welcome to opportunity to guide you through your divorce proceedings so you can confidently begin the next phase of your life.
“Attorney Shaw is very compassionate. She and her staff helped me through a very difficult time.”
“Heather walked us through the entire process, kept us informed while maintaining our comfort level.”
“Ms. Shaw was very professional but at the same time, she was personable!”
“I got everything I wanted and more at an affordable cost.”
“After meeting with Ms. Shaw - I know it was money well spent.”
Get started by scheduling your consultation. We will provide you with the supportive guidance you need in order to begin the next chapter of your life.
Case ConsultationWe offer clients an informative consultation to share the details of their situation.
We offer the advocacy our clients need to protect themselves and their family.
We help our clients set realistic goals and stand by their side every step of the way.
The strategic and unwavering representation we provide is hard to find elsewhere.