In North Carolina, unless there are other grounds, parties must be separated for one full year before either can file a legal action seeking an absolute divorce. Other matters commonly related to a divorce, such as child custody, child support, post-separation support, alimony, and equitable distribution, should be addressed during the period of separation and before the judgment of divorce is granted. 

Entry of a judgment of divorce has serious legal consequences. Any claims for post-separation support, alimony or equitable distribution must be resolved or pending before the court before a judgment of divorce is entered. Otherwise, both parties are barred from asserting those claims in the future. 

If you have made the decision to separate from your spouse, or have already separated, we recommend that you consult with a qualified family law attorney who can assess your specific situation and provide you with valuable information to ensure your rights and interests are protected. Consulting with a family law attorney at the onset or early stages of your separation can help you avoid agreeing to something that you did not fully understand, or waiving rights that you did not know you had.

Siemens Family Law Group is dedicated exclusively to the practice of family law. We understand that divorce is not a single traumatic event, but rather a process that impacts all major aspects of your life. Addressing your legal issues is one step in the process. Whether your case involves a simple divorce, a high net worth estate, or complex legal issues, our attorneys can provide you with practiced guidance and effective advocacy to optimize your chances of a favorable outcome.