New to NC-Separation and Residency

Just moved to NC, should be simple, just want to confirm my understanding of the law.

  1. Must be separated a year and a day and this could start today, regardless of only being in state for 2 weeks?
  2. 6 Month residency is for filing divorce not for the separation period begin date? For example, if we separated today, in 6 months we would be legally able to file for divorce but would need to wait another 6 months and 1 day to file anyway so it’s kind of irrelevant until we have been separated for 1 year and 1 day and that can begin today without have been in NC for 6 months.
  3. This one is a little more difficult, can I start using an attorney now for separation agreement and advice? or do I have to wait 6 months?

(1) Correct, you must be separated for one year before you can get divorced. You cannot file for the absolute divorce until the day after the one-year mark of separation at the earliest. Where you live when you separate is irrelevant for absolute divorce purposes.

(2) When you file for absolute divorce (which happens no earlier than the day after the one-year mark of separation), you must be a resident of the State of North Carolina for the prior six months.

(3) You can start working with an attorney and on a separation agreement now, but you would not be able to file any claims in court (for example, equitable distribution or alimony) because you have not been a resident of the State of NC for the preceding six months. Your previous state will likely still have jurisdiction over these issues.

Anna Ayscue

Attorney with Rosen Law Firm Cary • Chapel Hill • Durham • Raleigh • Wake Forest

Rosen Online | Unlimited confidential access to a North Carolina attorney for $199/mo - click here

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