The divorce process can be exhausting for both spouses even if it is amicable. If you and your spouse cannot agree on major issues, the process takes much longer and you may wonder when the divorce will ever be final. Some couples may try to resolve their issues for years after they first separated. In North Carolina, the length of time required to get your final Divorce Decree varies based on your circumstances. Often, it is in your best interest to hire a charlotte family law attorney to avoid making costly mistakes that can drag your divorce process even longer.
When to Get a Divorce Decree
When a judge signs the Divorce Decree, your divorce is officially final. The decree is the final order of the court that states your marriage is terminated. You will need this document if you want to remarry.
In a contested divorce, the Divorce Decree contains the decisions of the judge regarding the issues you and your spouse could not agree upon including alimony, property division, child custody, and child support. You may not agree with the decision of the judge but you should not violate the terms of the Decree because you can be charged with contempt.
Getting an absolute divorce in Charlotte, North Carolina is not a quick process. State law only allows absolute divorce in cases of incurable insanity or when the couple has lived separately for a minimum of one year. Because you and your spouse must live separately to be able to file for divorce, you should set up separate residences.
After a year, you may file a Complaint for Divorce and serve it on your spouse together with a summon. Your spouse has thirty days to file an answer and any Counterclaims but they can ask for a thirty-day extension from the court. When things go as expected, your divorce can be final in 45-90 days after filing the Complaint for Divorce. But, if you and your spouse can’t agree on some issues in your divorce or if you cannot find your spouse to serve the legal papers, the process will take longer.
A great attorney can be your strongest advocate and will do their best to make the divorce process move smoothly. They have the experience necessary to negotiate with the lawyer of your spouse to reach a mutually agreeable settlement or fight for you in court.