Start a divorce early?

I know that you have to be physically separated for 12 months before filing for a divorce. My question is can you at least start the process early? Say at the 10-11 month mark? File the initial set of forms, serve the spouse, etc. By the time I got to court it would be 12 months. Is this allowable?

For an absolute divorce, no, this is not allowed. The complaint for absolute divorce (which starts the absolute divorce process) cannot be filed until you have been separated for a full year. The very earliest you can file for absolute divorce is one day after the full year of separation has passed. For example, if you separated on 5/15/2017, the very earliest you can start the absolute divorce process (by filing the complaint) would be 5/16/2018.

Anna Ayscue

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

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