I was under the impression that in NC, you could file for divorce after living apart for a year and a day. What does it mean for one to contest the divorce and what does that mean to the one who filed?
A divorce itself cannot be contested, only the facts alleged in the Complaint for divorce. For instance, the defendant could deny that the parties have actually been living apart for one year, or deny other facts alleged in the case.
Often times when people speak of a contested divorce, they are using the word divorce as an umbrella term and they are actually stating that the issues relevant to separation and divorce (property distribution, alimony, child custody, and child support) are contested.