As a prerequisite to no-fault divorce, people who want to end their marriage must live separately for at least one year before a family court ends the marriage. Prior to the separation period, it may be in both parties’ best interests to resolve various marital issues that could come up during a divorce. Even if they do not intend to get a divorce at the end of the separation, it is well-advised to be prepared.
Understanding how state law governs separating couples can be crucial to ensuring the best resolution to your split. A knowledgeable marital agreement attorney at Schiller & Hamilton has experience helping couples like you. A Beaufort separation agreements lawyer could be the ally you need to protect your legal rights and best interests through this complex process.
Pursuing a Separation Arrangement in Beaufort
Either spouse in a marriage may start the process of pursuing an Order of Separate Maintenance, regardless of if they actually initiated the separation. This filing party, the plaintiff, must file a Summons and Complaint seeking this order with the court that will oversee their case and a Notice and Motion for Temporary Relief. These documents are then served on the non-filing spouse, making them the defendant.
The defendant has 30 days to formally answer their Summons or submit a counterclaim seeking different terms than those requested by the plaintiff. A judge then presides over further negotiations and reviews the issues to eventually issue an order, which is a temporary, legally binding decree. The order is meant to last until the separating parties reach a final divorce agreement. A separation agreements attorney in Beaufort could help file relevant documents and advocate for a particular spouse’s interests during negotiations.
For a free legal consultation with a Beaufort Separation Agreements Lawyer call 1-803-366-0333
What Does an Order of Separate Maintenance Cover?
Legal separation is not an alternative to divorce, so state residents cannot form separation arrangements in the same way that they might elsewhere in the country. South Carolina family courts may issue an Order of Separate Maintenance, which addresses matters that could come up in a divorce without legally ending a marriage.
Having an order is not a prerequisite for divorce, but it can be a good way to avoid potential issues that could otherwise prolong a future divorce process. Orders of Separate Maintenance can establish who has custody and visitation rights over children, financial support obligations, and ownership over certain assets and debts.
Separating spouses can draft a prospective order and submit it to the court for approval. The order should be based on whether the agreement is fair to all parties, protects the best interests of the children, and adheres to applicable state laws. A Beaufort attorney could provide irreplaceable assistance with drafting a fair order that is tailored to a separating couple’s unique needs and desires.
Beaufort Separation Agreements Lawyer Near Me 1-803-366-0333
Enlist a Beaufort Separation Agreements Attorney Today
Separating from your spouse is not strictly required as a precursor to divorce proceedings, but it can go a long way towards simplifying it. Guidance from compassionate legal counsel could also play a key role in ensuring your contract preserves your interests and adheres with court expectations.
Speaking with a Beaufort separation agreements lawyer should be a priority for anyone thinking about potentially separating or eventual divorce. Call Schiller & Hamilton today for a consultation.