During a North Carolina divorce, it is easy to get overwhelmed with the dramatic life changes people might experience. That can lead to mistakes that prove costly in the short and long term. One example that might sound simple is knowing when to request alimony (also referred to as spousal support). Aspects of the absolute divorce process and requesting support from the former spouse are critical and should be understood from the outset.
Absolute divorce and spousal support
If a couple receives an absolute divorce, it means they are free to remarry if they choose to do so. They can also move forward with their life and make individual decisions like filing taxes as a single person. To get a divorce, there must be a separation that lasts for more than one year before filing. One party must have lived in the state for at least six months before pursuing the divorce. People must realize that if they plan to request that alimony be paid, it must be done while the case is in progress. This might seem obvious, but making a mistake on this topic can be problematic.
In many marriages, one spouse is the primary breadwinner. After a divorce, this can leave the spouse who did not earn as much or was a homemaker facing financial challenges. Alimony is meant to avoid this issue. People are eligible for alimony if they are dependent on the other party or they need the support to make ends meet. Various factors are part of the process when determining spousal support including the reasons for the divorce, the earning capacities of the parties, property owned individually and as a couple, the fundamental needs of the spouse and more. After the absolute divorce has been granted, there cannot be a request for alimony.
For any family law case, having guidance can be essential
Regardless of the perspective and the situation, it is important for people who are considering a divorce to understand the legal nuance of a case. It is generally not as simple as just deciding to part ways and having it become a reality. There are legal factors that should be assessed beforehand. That includes the absolute divorce process and seeking alimony. For this and any area of divorce, it is beneficial to have comprehensive advice and representation.