Compassionate Attorneys for North Carolina Divorce
Skillful Representation in Elizabeth City, Moyock, and the Outer Banks for North Carolina Divorce and Family Law Matters
Divorce is never easy. Whether you and your spouse agree to an uncontested divorce or you’re facing a contentious battle, ending a marriage can be emotionally draining. You might also be feeling stressed about finances and overwhelmed by the prospect of having to navigate the court system. No matter what stage you’re at in the divorce process, you don’t have to go through it alone — the divorce and family law attorneys at The Twiford Law Firm can help take the burden off your shoulders and ensure that your legal rights are protected every step of the way.
Providing compassionate representation in Elizabeth City, Moyock, and the Outer Banks, we assist clients in all North Carolina divorce-related matters from separation to commencing the action, litigating property disputes or alimony, and handling child support and custody issues. We are committed to working closely with each of our clients to reach a resolution that will benefit them and their families.
Uncontested and Contested North Carolina Divorce
Divorce in NC can be contested or uncontested. If you and your spouse have lived apart for a year or more and can agree on all the issues that need to be resolved prior to ending your marriage, you may consider filing for an uncontested divorce. Rather than go through the time and expense associated with litigation, uncontested divorces are often less time-consuming and more cost-effective. An uncontested divorce can also help ensure you and your spouse part ways amicably.
If there are any issues that you and your spouse don’t agree on, including alimony, child support, custody, or property division, your divorce action will be considered a contested matter. The disputed issues can be resolved through litigation, negotiation, or settlement during the divorce process.
Whether your divorce is contested or uncontested, having an experienced attorney on your side is the only way you can ensure your legal rights will be protected — divorces sometimes begin as uncontested but become contested later. We can advise you concerning whether an uncontested or contested divorce might be right for your situation and guide you through the process.
While fault grounds for divorce in NC are still available, the state also recognizes “no-fault” divorce. This means that a spouse does not need to prove that there was any misconduct or wrongdoing on the part of the other spouse to be granted an “absolute divorce.” However, there are still many instances in which fault might play a role in your divorce. Our attorneys can discuss your specific circumstances and develop a tailored strategy that is best for your situation.
Division of Marital Property
If your divorce is contested, one of the major issues you may face concerns marital property division. Depending on how long your marriage was, you may have acquired a significant amount of property. Marital property can include any property that was acquired during the marriage — including the marital home.
Spouses may negotiate and settle the division of their property, or the court can decide if the parties are unable to reach an agreement. North Carolina courts follow the rule of equitable distribution when it comes to dividing property in a divorce. This means that the court will divide the property in a way that it deems fair. Courts will consider several factors in determining the division of marital property, including:
- The income of each party
- Support obligations from prior marriages
- The duration of the marriage
- Pensions, retirement, deferred compensation rights
- Marital contributions to a spouse’s education
- The liquidity of the marital property
- The tax consequences of each party
Property distribution for divorce in NC can be complex. Our attorneys work with our clients to assess their property and advise them concerning equitable distribution. We also have experience negotiating and litigating some of the most contentious property disputes.
If one of the spouses who is a party to the divorce is unable to financially support themselves or maintain the same standard of living that they had during the marriage, the court may award spousal maintenance, also known as alimony, to be paid by the higher-earning spouse.
In North Carolina, there are two types of alimony:
- post-separation support awarded for the duration of the divorce action
- alimony awarded to one spouse following the finalization of the divorce
The court will consider many factors in determining whether to award alimony, including whether there was marital misconduct, the earning ability of the spouses, the length of the marriage, the education level of the parties, the assets of the parties, and the needs of the spouses. Our attorneys can discuss all aspects of alimony with you and help protect your financial interests, whether you are the party who will be paying alimony or is entitled to receive it.
Domestic violence is a serious problem in some marriages and should be addressed immediately. Whether or not you’ve already commenced the divorce process, it’s critical to make sure you get the protection you need as quickly as possible. If you’ve been a victim of domestic violence in your marriage, our attorneys will handle your case with the utmost discretion and sensitivity and help you take the necessary measures to protect yourself and your children.
We assist with filing domestic violence protective orders and can help ensure that you have the exclusive right to live in the marital property so that you and your children can be safe. In some cases, we can help you obtain a North Carolina divorce from bed and board, which is similar to a legal separation. Our divorce and family law attorneys can discuss your options and legal remedies.
Prenuptial and Postnuptial Agreements
Prenuptial and postnuptial agreements can help prevent any property disputes before they arise. While a prenuptial is entered into before the marriage, a postnuptial can be entered into during the marriage. Both types of agreements are fully enforceable in court and can ensure that you address how you would like property to be divided in the event of a divorce.
Prenuptial agreements and postnuptial agreements are extremely common and are appropriate for any income level. They can address a wide variety of issues concerning separate property, alimony, asset management during the marriage, how property will be divided in the event of a divorce, and any other property issues. Our attorneys are skilled at drafting effective prenuptial and postnuptial agreements that can withstand litigation.
Child Custody and Support
When you’re going through a divorce, there is nothing as important as your children. Child custody and support are crucial issues that must be addressed in divorce cases involving children. Custody and support matters can also be complicated and highly contested. Our family law attorneys provide effective advocacy for all child custody and support issues to help ensure that your child’s best interests are protected.
North Carolina Divorce Attorneys Committed to Helping You Move Forward
At The Twiford Law Firm, we understand that divorce can be stressful and overwhelming. Our divorce and family law attorneys are committed to helping you reach a positive outcome so that you can move forward. With offices in Moyock and Elizabeth City, The Twiford Law Firm provides trusted and caring representation for divorce, matrimonial matters, and family law issues throughout Northeastern North Carolina and the Outer Banks. Contact us today to schedule a consultation to learn how we can help.