Reopening Divorce settlement

Dear Suszn:

Greetings. My answer is that it depends. Generally once the separation agreement is signed, it is a done deal. When the divorce is final, the claims for alimony and equitable distribution are lost. But, there may be a technical problem with the agreement. First, if a mediator helped both of you, there could be a breach of the attorney’s ethical duties - as a mediator must be neutral and CANNOT advise you on the law in any way. That may lead into being able to reopen or litigate the separation agreement. I think it is a long shot and would cost your husband more than he is willing to pay. Just let him simmer for a while, get your child support, and move on. Best of luck.

Janet L. Fritts
Attorney at Law
4101 Lake Boone Trail, Suite 500
Raleigh, North Carolina 27607

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 but a full discussion with an attorney should be undertaken before taking any action.

My divorce has been final since November 2000.(Sign by a Judge and filed with clerk of Superior Court). My X, who just received papers to appear in court for child support, is now up in arms about not getting a fair deal in the divorce settlement. We have an Absolute divorce, used a mediator to help determine the settlement. The settlement, who got what, who our child lives, child support amount etc, was not part of the paperwork that went with the divorce paperwork to the judge. My X now says, he’s spent over 3 hours with his lawyer and if I’m going to sue him for child support, he’s going to reopen the divorce settlement and get his fair due. Can he reopen the settlement or is it a done deal?