North Carolina is a unique state—from its gorgeous beaches to its amazing barbecue, there are a few things that really set the Tar Heel State apart and North Carolina’s divorce laws are among them.
North Carolina is among the states that require a married couple seeking a divorce to live under a separation for one year before a divorce can be granted, which requires both spouses to file paperwork and agree on when the separation began and when it will end.
In the case of an uncooperative spouse that refuses to actively participate in a divorce, North Carolina offers what’s known as a divorce from bed and board.
It is a fault-based legal action that does not dissolve a marriage, but will official recognize and begin the separation “clock,” if you will. In essence, it’s a court-ordered decree of separation.
Divorce from bed and board filings must be fault-based and North Carolina family courts recognize the following six criteria in granting the decree:
- Maliciously turns the other out of doors.
- By cruel or barbarous treatment endangers the life of the other
- Offers such indignities to the person of the other as to render his or her condition intolerable and life burdensome.
- Becomes an excessive user of alcohol or drugs so as to render the condition of the other spouse intolerable and the life of that spouse burdensome.
- Commits adultery
Have you attempted to file for legal separation from your spouse in North Carolina and find yourself getting nowhere? You’re likely a candidate for a divorce from bed and board decree and your best plan of action is to hire a North Carolina family lawyer to help you best protect yourself and your family moving forward.