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Greenville Family Law Blog

Domestic violence: You can get out and get the divorce you need

Domestic violence is extremely difficult to deal with. For those victimized by their spouses, divorce may be what they want but are too scared to ask for. When domestic violence is a major part of a marriage, it is vital that the victim becomes aware of the steps he or she can take to get out of the situation.

The first thing to know is that there are multiple kinds of domestic violence. They are not all physical or even violent. Emotional, financial, sexual and other forms of abuse are all considered to be types of domestic violence.

Child welfare may be reformed in North Carolina

Child welfare services are utilized by many people. Parents wishing to adopt may need to have the consultants approve them and their homes for children's safety before adoption. If there are allegations of abuse, the same services are supposed to follow up to make sure children are kept safe.

As a parent, your primary concern is your child's welfare, so knowing that this system could be reformed soon is positive news. There is new legislation being proposed that would change the current system from a county-based system to one with regional offices and more state oversight.

New bill requires more home visits after loss of custody

A toddler's death that took place in Moore has drawn media attention and helped make changes to custody rules to prevent such incidents from happening again in the future. According to the news report, the toddler, a 23-month-old child, had been at home with his mother when he wandered away from the house and fell into a pond. He was discovered after he drowned in the pond that was just half a mile from his home.

The tragic part of the case was that the child had been removed from his mother's custody in the previous fall due to an alcohol-induced argument. The children, the child and his sibling, were there at the time, and a gun was pulled out during the argument. This resulted in the children going to temporary guardians, who now state that they never wanted the children to go back to their mother.

Legal separations and divorces have their own benefits

You're considering getting a divorce, but you've also looked into a legal separation. You're not sure which one you want, and it would be helpful if you had more information.

Fortunately, the differences between the two are fairly easy to understand. Legal separations are binding agreements that help you resolve issues between yourself and your spouse. Those issues might be things like deciding the custody of your children or who has to pay the debts you once shared.

You can work together to come up with an amicable settlement

You loved your spouse, and you never thought your arguments and disagreements would bring your marriage to a point of divorce. It's happened, though, and now you want to do what's best and get out of your marriage.

You don't want to be difficult during the divorce, and neither does your spouse. That's wonderful, because it means you can work together to create parenting plans or to negotiate a settlement without the animosity some couples face.

Negotiating can help you get a fair cut during divorce

When you get married, any assets you collect while you're with your spouse become marital assets. There are a few small exceptions, but on the whole, if you have a shared bank account, a home or other assets, you both have ownership over that property.

North Carolina does not recognize community property, which means that your property will be divided equitably during a divorce. That doesn't mean that each of you will receive 50 percent of your estate. Instead, a number of factors will be considered to determine who receives what.

Can you get back overpaid child support?

If you've been paying too much in child support, one of the things you might be asking yourself is if you can get some of that money back. The court order designates how much you pay, so in your opinion, any overpayment should be returned to you. Does it work that way?

Usually it doesn't. However, there are exceptions. For example, if you ask to modify your payments because you have a job that pays less than the one you used to have, you still have to pay your full child support amount until that modification is approved. That modification isn't approved for several months. Now, you may be able to have the child support decrease from the time of the petition until approval repaid to you. It might be repaid as a reduction in what you owe in future months or in other manners, depending on your situation.

Create a parenting plan or risk the court's decision

It's important to understand what will happen to your child after a divorce. If you and your spouse work together, it's possible to create a parenting plan that benefits you and your child. If you can't work together, the court may make a decision on your behalf that both parties then must abide by.

In any case, the court or you need to take your child's best interests to heart. If you are in a situation where your spouse is dangerous or violent, the court may determine that giving you sole physical and legal custody is a good move. If you are in a relationship where you can't live together but get along with your spouse, then joint custody is a possibility.

Your sole custody case is one of a kind, so get the help you need

You want to have your child to yourself. It's not a selfish reason -- you fear for your child's safety and don't want your spouse to have any legal right to make decisions on your child's behalf. If you want sole custody, there are a few things to know.

Can you win sole custody without child abuse taking place?

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Law Firm, PLLC

321 Evans Street, Suite 200
Hendrix Building
Greenville, NC 27858

Phone: 252-493-6114
Toll-Free: 800-682-1756
Fax: 252-757-3563

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