Divorce Guide

Divorce Guide


Getting divorce in North Carolina


Every state has its own laws regarding the divorce. Getting divorce in North Carolina also has some special laws to follow. These are as follow.

  • To file for a divorce, one of the spouses must have been a resident of the State of North Carolina for at least six months. [According to North Carolina General Statutes, Chapter 50, Sections 50-3 and 50-8]
  • North Carolina grants the following grounds for divorce:
  • Living separate for one year.
  • Living separate and apart for three years, showing the reason of the untreatable mental illness of one of the spouses, the court may award a decree of absolute divorce upon the petition of the spouse who is mentally healthy.[ According to North Carolina General Statutes, Chapter 50, Sections 50-5.1, 50-6, and 50-7,]
  • North Carolina can allow the legal separation only when the separation agreement is the written from and signed by both the parties.[ According to North Carolina General Statutes, Chapter 50, Section 52-10.1]
  • In the case of contested divorce process, issues such as custody or visitation of a minor child, or property division is discussed by the court for the negotiation [ According to North Carolina General Statutes, Chapter 50, Section 50-13.1]
  • North Carolina is an equitable distribution state. There is an equal sharing of marital property unless the court determines that an equal division is not reasonable. The court considers important factors like present earnings of both the parties, when determining the property distribution:
  • While getting divorce in North Carolina, wife can change her name upon application to the clerk of court.
  • While getting a divorce in North Carolina, joint custody to the parents is considered for the welfare of child. In contested divorce custody cases, child custody is awarded by taking child’s welfare into consideration. For making this decision court considers all applicable factors including evidence of domestic violence between the couple. [North Carolina General Statutes, Chapter 50, Section 50-13.2]

There are some important steps to get divorce in North Carolina.

  • Complete the legal papers required by your county. Make three copies of the complaint. Have the complaints notarized and confirmed. The clerk of court provides carbonized papers for the summons, resulting in four copies.
  • File the complaint, cover sheet and summons with the clerk of court. Pay the filing fees. This fee is varying from county to county. The Clerk of Court will date-stamp all papers and records your case number.
  • Send the summons to your spouse by the Sheriff's Office or by specialized mail. Inform the clerk of court by submitting all receipts of served the summons by certified mail. Your spouse will get 30 days to challenge the divorce petition.
  • File a hearing request form with the clerk of court.
  • Mail a copy of the hearing appeal to your spouse.
  • Complete the affidavit of service in case of certified mail.
  • Bring all papers to court on the date of the hearing, including all receipts.
  • Some counties in North Carolina will require a witness to testify to the reality of your statement of separation.
  • Court will sign the divorce decree which will finalize your divorce in North Carolina.

This information provided will defiantly help you for getting a divorce in North Carolina. If the court finds that you do not have jurisdictional rights to file the case it will eventually be dismissed in North Carolina.


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