South Carolina Divorce Laws

South Carolina Divorce Details

As you stand before your friends and family during a wedding ceremony, the last thing on your mind should be whether or not you’ll end up in divorce court. Unfortunately, according to recent statistics, over half of American marriages end in divorce.

South Carolina divorceIn South Carolina, you can actually begin those divorce proceedings if you’ve lived there for only three months. If only one spouse is living in South Carolina then they’ll need to wait for up to a year before filing for divorce.

Legal Grounds for Divorce in South Carolina

The grounds for a divorce in South Carolina are simple and straightforward. They include when one spouse has committed adultery, physical cruelty, is a habitual drinker or drug user, or the couple have lived separately for at least a year. If any one of those conditions can be proven in front of the judge then the divorce will be granted.

The issues of property distribution, alimony payments, and child support are separate from the grounds for divorce.

Filing with the Court in South Carolina

You must file your South Carolina divorce papers in the court located in the County where you presently reside. We will provide the court information in the documents that we send to you, but some of the courts in South Carolina are listed below:

  • Richland County Family Court:
    PO Box 2766, 1701 Main Street, Rm 205, Columbia, SC 29202 Phone: (803) 576-1999 Fax: (803) 748-5039
  • Lexington County Family Court:
    205 East Main Street, Suite 146, Lexington, SC 29072-3599 Phone: (803) 785-8212 Fax: (803) 785-8314
  • Charleston County Family Court:
    100 Broad Street Suite 106, Charleston, SC 29401-2258 Phone: (843) 958-4400 Fax: (843) 958-4434
  • Beaufort County Family Court:
    PO Box 1128, 102 Ribaut Road, Rm. 208, Beaufort, SC 29901-1128 Phone: (843) 470-5218 Fax: (843) 470-5248
  • Dorchester County Family Court:
    101 Ridge Street, St. George, SC 29477 Phone: (843) 563-0121 Fax: (843) 563-0178
  • York County Family Court:
    PO Box 649, 1675 -1G York Highway, York, SC 29745 Phone: (803) 628-3036 Fax: (803) 628-3133
  • Greenville County Family Court:
    305 E. North Street, Greenville, SC 29601-2120 Phone: (864) 467-8551 Fax: (864) 467-8540 Email: [email protected]
  • Florence County Family Court:
    180 N. Irby St., Florence, SC 29501-3456 Phone: (843) 665-3031 Fax: (843) 665-3097
  • Horry County Family Court:
    PO Box 677, 1301 2nd Avenue, Conway, SC 29528 Phone: (843) 915-5080 Fax: (843) 915-6081
  • Georgetown County Family Court:
    129 Screven Street, Suite 221, Georgetown, SC 29442 Phone: (843) 545-3046 Fax: (843) 545-3294

If your County court is not listed, the information for your court will be included in the divorce papers we send you.

Divorce Property Distribution in South Carolina

If any claims of property are disputed in the divorce, then the judge will make the final ruling to determine what is an equitable spilt. What is excluded in the distribution decision is anything that was acquired by either spouse before the marriage or any gift or inheritance. For the actual property that is considered marital assets, the judge will consider how long the marriage lasted and the ages of the husband and wife.

They can also factor in who was at fault in the breakup and who contributed to the assets in the first place. A judge will also consider each spouse’s current financial earning potential, their health, and if they will need to go back to school for a new career. If there are any debts or liens against the property then that will also be equally divided between the parties.

Alimony/Spousal Support Laws in South Carolina

In South Carolina, the parameters for determining alimony or spousal support follow along the same line as the property distribution. The judge can consider who was a fault for the break up and who contributed what. They will also factor in the tax burdens placed on someone who would suddenly become a property owner as well as the living expenses.

Child Custody and Support Laws in South Carolina

When it comes to child custody, a South Carolina divorce judge will think about what is best for the child based on a set of interviews with the entire family. How mature the child is and what their preference for living arrangements carries a lot of weight with the judges.

The same goes for any religious affiliations if they differ between the children and the parents. If there is any report of abuse then that will surely work against the accused.

Once the issue of child custody has been resolved, then child support payments need to be worked out. These payments will be based on how many children are part of the family, what debts need to be paid off, the cost for any special medical needs or education.

If any of the children actually have the potential to earn an income that can be added to the mix as well before the final conclusion is made by the judge.

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