The Beginning of the End

You may change the locks. He left the residence, and he can be charged with domestic criminal trespass if he comes back without your permission. Make sure you notify him (in writing preferably) that he’s not welcome back in the home, though.

What you do with his personal property is your decision. It’s probably best to arrange a time with him that he can come and get it, and then you’ll be finished with that unpleasant task.

You may have more than just an alimony issue. You could also have a property issue. It’s called equitable distribution. You can read more about it on our website. Regarding the alimony, it sounds as though you may have a legitimate claim there. When deciding whether to spend the money to retain an attorney, you must evaluate not only the cost of hiring the attorney, but also what not hiring one could cost you.

You also should consider pursuing a claim for something called post-separation support, which you can think of as “temporary alimony.” PSS is a mechanism to make your husband pay the bills you speak of.

You can move to another state without losing your rights to alimony, divorce, etc. in North Carolina, but you have to file here before you move or your spouse has to live here when you file.

My advice is to go to an attorney and sit down with him or her for a consultation. Most attorneys will sit down with you for an hour or so for a minimal fee, and then will give you an opinion about what you should do.

And one last thing. If you haven’t filed claims for alimony, PSS, or Equitable Distribution (property) before you or your husband obtains a divorce, you lose your right to those things. Remember that.

David L. McGuire
The Rosen Law Firm
4101 Lake Boone Trail, Suite 200
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 current situation: I moved here 7 years ago. I’ve been married for 6 years. We lived together for a year. My husband moved out 2 weeks ago into an apartment (as far as I know-by himself). He stated that I ‘drove him away’ because I asked too many questions about his businesses and personal life. He stated he didn’t want to be married anymore. I was ill when I moved here-after the marriage I went to school for 4 years-and obtained student loans to pay for living expenses. My husband owns several businesses and has an active social life. I have physical and mental limitations-but was trying to get my own business started as well as continuously seeking and applying for part-time jobs because he would get angry if I didn’t pay my portion of the bills or asked to borrow money.
The Questions: since he has moved out (and although it’s been 2 weeks-an apartment is lease required and seems like a permanent move in my book) do I have the right to change the locks on the door-since I do not have access to his current residency?
2)He has come back here when I’ve been gone and gathered the rest of his clothes,but there are still other personal items that belong to him-do I make arrangements for him to get all his things in one day-or should I pack them up and take them to a relative? what are my rights in this area? I don’t want to be held responsible for his left behind things-I also don’t want him taunting me with taking a little out at a time in the home when I’m gone–or come home to an empty home.
3)I cannot afford to pay for a divorce or seperation-does this mean that I forfeit my right to alimony?
4)Trying to make it on my own at this time will create a re-lapse in my condition if I push beyond my limitations. I have family and support in another state-if I move to another state-have I jeoporized the possibility of receiving alimony or any settlement. In other words, do I have to stay here for a year until a divorce is finalized?
5)Since my husband has left me, can I hold him accountable for continuing to pay the bills here-as he’s been paying them for the past year? thanks for any advice. This action of seperation/divorce is not what I want-and he knows this-but I also do not want to let him think he can get away with the emotional abuse and be foot loose and fancy free to completely dis-own me.