Legal Separation in South Carolina
South Carolina does not recognize legal separation.. However, if you are not yet eligible to obtain a divorce in South Carolina you can petition the court for an order of Separate Support and Maintenance until you are able to obtain a final divorce.
Getting a divorce or a final order of separate support and maintenance requires the help of a good attorney. At Sarah Henry Law, we can help you through every step of the process. Your lawyer will work with you to ensure that your rights are protected and will help you navigate the often-complex legal landscape.
Alternatives to Legal Separation
While legal separation is not recognized by South Carolina courts, you may be eligible to file for an order of Separate Support and Maintenance.
This order allows you to take many of the steps you would take in a divorce while remaining legally married. You may live apart from your spouse, equitably divide your marital assets, determine custody, and receive payments like alimony or child support.
Separate Support and Maintenance orders can provide freedom if you’re unable to divorce, but it can be difficult to get the agreement you want without help. Your lawyer can make the process easier by representing you during mediation and in the courtroom, calculating the value of your support payments, and helping you choose the best option for your needs.
Living Arrangements and Your South Carolina Divorce
In South Carolina, living apart from your spouse for over one year means that you can qualify for a no-fault divorce. This is good news because, in all other situations, South Carolina is a fault state for divorce and requires that a divorce filing be grounded on an instance of adultery, habitual drunkenness or drug use, desertion, or physical abuse.
In the absence of any of those four grounds, you would need to live separate from your spouse for over a year to qualify for a divorce. This means that while legal separation doesn’t exist in South Carolina family law, living separately from your spouse for an extended period of time can be an important step that leads to the final divorce you desire.
Get the Best Divorce Legal Help
If you are considering divorce in South Carolina, the first step is to contact an experienced family law attorney. The office of Sarah Henry Law has the tools you need to handle your case.
Your lawyer will work with you to ensure that your rights are protected and can help you navigate the often-complex legal landscape. Contact Sarah Henry Law today at 864-478-8324 or through the form below to get started on your legal separation.