My Options

DO NOT USE THE SAME LAWYER. I can’t stress that enough.

If you have access to a credit card, then take it and use that to pay for a consultation. I would not mention your appointment to your husband. You need to get your own information that is geared to your benefit. Yes, he might get mad, but you can be assured that HE will get a good lawyer, and you deserve the same.

A long term marriage will be very emotional and stressful to end…going through all that you have accumulated financially and emotionally. Prepare yourself for that. It will get messy, it won’t be easy and you will go on a roller coaster of emotions.

Basically you are entitled to 1/2 of the marital assets as well as debt. I commend you for looking for a job. Being able to take care of yourself financially will be very important. You may be eligible for alimony (or partial) since you’ve been a SAH Mom for the last 5
years, but I’m not sure of that.

But most importantly: Get your OWN lawyer—even if you have to charge it or borrow for it. You can’t afford NOT to do this.

AGREED. You also have to keep in mind that up until the time that you do separate, any money that is in any accounts is 1/2 yours, so you do have access to funds if available. Start now with documenting everything you can think of. Keep a journal if needed of daily happenings, things said/promised, money spent.
After you come to terms with this, so to speak, you can spend the time in between deciding how things will be divided when you do separate. Who will leave, who will take what and what will be left, what will be sold and who will pay what…it’s a lot to go through.

Find someone to talk to. A pastor at church, a friend, a family member. Make sure that you talk to someone that will be on your side in this. Someone that you trust that could look over proposed agreements or just someone that you can lean on. Someone besides the attorney that has your best interest at heart. You will need this.
Do not talk to his friends, business partners or their wives, or his family about this.
I know this may be difficult but people are going to pick sides. Expect this and don’t take it too personally. I have lost a couple of people whom I thought were very good friends because of divorce.

My husband and his ex were married for 15 years. She had just turned 16 when they were married and he was 20. He was a great deal more mature than she, so he feels as though he raised her. She still calls him to talk about issues with her boyfriend, the children, her family, finances. I know that you can not spend that length of time with someone and just stop feeling for them. That person will always be part of who you are. 90% of the experiences and memories that you have include them and there’s nothing that will change that and why would you want to…that’s what makes you who you are now. Take time to grieve for the relationship if you need it. You have children, though they are grown, so you will always be connected to each other. After some time has passed, you may find that you can be friends again.

You and your husband should definitely not use the same attorney. Many attorney’s offer an initial consultation for a low cost, but I am not aware of any attorney’s who offer free consultations. We also offer free seminars in the Charlotte area, they occur several times a month, you may find some helpful information attending the seminar.

If the value of the business is in question, you can retain the services of a business valuator and they can give you an educated opinion as to the value of the business.

Helena M. Nevicosi
Attorney with Rosen Law Firm

4101 Lake Boone Trail, Suite 500
Raleigh, North Carolina 27607
919.787.6668 main phone
919.787.6361 main fax

Charlotte Office
301 McCullough Drive
Suite 510
Charlotte, NC 28262
Main Phone: (704)307.4600
Main Fax: (704) 9343.0044

Durham & Chapel Hill Office
1829 East Franklin Street
Building 600
Chapel Hill, NC 27514
(919) 321.0780


The response posted above is based upon the limited factual information made available and is not intended as a full and complete response to the question. The only reliable manner to obtain complete and adequate legal advice is to consult with an attorney, fully explain your situation, and allow the attorney sufficient opportunity to research the applicable law and facts required to render an accurate opinion. The basic information provided above is intended as a public service only, a full discussion with an attorney should be undertaken before taking any action. The information posted on this forum is available for public viewing and is not intended to create an attorney client relationship with any individual. These answers are provided for informational purposes only, a person should consult with their own individual legal counsel before taking any action that could affect their legal rights or obligations.

My husband and I have been married for 27 years. We live in Concord, NC and have one child left at home who will be 18 in Oct. My husband came to me in Feb. and announced he no longer wants to be married and would be happier on his own. We are still living in the same house and willing to continue to do so until our daughter leaves for college in the fall.

In the beginning when he first told me this I thought maybe he was just depressed because he owns a business with two partners and is constantly saying the business is not doing well. He finally went to the doctor and claims the doctor said he was not depressed but stressed which is normal, gave him a physical, and also a sample of Viagra, which he has yet to try and when I asked him why, he said he does not want to be intimate with me anymore. We actually haven’t been intimate in a a long time because he has become impotent and this has been going on for a few years now. I of course asked him if he has a girlfriend and he said no but at this point I don’t if anything he says is true…except the fact that he does want a separation. I cried and asked him if he would be willing to see a counselor but no, he just wants out but he insists he wants is to remain the best of friends. ???

We have a home worth about $400,000 which we owe $312,000 on. We have a condo at the beach that is almost 4 years old and we owe $110,000 on it and it is worth about $170,000. We have a 401-K that is worth $38,000 but is in his name only and a $12,000 IRA in both of our names. My husband retired from the fire dept. in 2003 and receives $4,000 a month in retirement benefits.

Along with all of the above, he is 1/3 owner of a business which bills out on the average about $400,000 a month. The business is 8 years old and has about 30 employees. He claims according to the books it only worth about $300,000 because they don’t own the building it is in but I would like to know what the actual worth is and also if he is hiding any assets. I should be entitled to 1/2 of his third and he knows this.

I know I need an attorney but I don’t have access to any funds and need a free consulation so I can find out what my rights are and how I go about protecting myself. I have mentioned to him several times that we need to seek legal advice and he gets furious…then yesterday he said we can do so but should use the same attorney. I am very confused. I only want what is fair and rightfully mine. I have been a stay at home mom for the last 5 years and am diligently looking for employment, but until then I have very little access to any money of my own.

I hope you can help guide me in the right direction.