We Handle Uncontested and Contested Divorce Cases in Union County and Throughout the Region

Are you considering a divorce? In North Carolina, the purpose of divorce is to dissolve or terminate a marriage. Without competent divorce or separation counsel, divorce can have a devastating impact on:

  • your life
  • your property
  • any claims for spousal support
  • your children

Even if you and your spouse agree it is the right decision, divorce is hard. Many issues may need to be addressed and resolved—such as property issues, to spousal support, child support or child custody.

At Plyler, Long & Corigliano, LLP, our Monroe divorce lawyers are skilled, experienced, and future-focused advocates for people and families. It is our mission to ensure that clients find the best solution for their situation. If you have any questions about the divorce process or any related family law issue, we are here to help. Contact us at our Monroe law office to set up a confidential, no obligation initial consultation with an experienced North Carolina divorce attorney.

Who Can File for a Divorce in North Carolina?

To obtain a divorce in Monroe, North Carolina, you must be separated continuously for at least one year before filing for divorce with the intent to live separately and apart. Proof of fault is not required. Any claims for post-separation support, alimony, or equitable distribution must be made or reserved before the granting of absolute divorce or you risk those claims being barred. Divorce cases can be split into two broad categories:

  • Uncontested Divorce: An uncontested divorce in North Carolina is a legal process where there are no issues of property, alimony, or spousal support for the court to decide. It is a type of divorce that typically requires less time and lower costs but it does not address any issues arising out of the marriage and if those issues are not previously resolved by agreement, they could be barred if an uncontested divorce is granted. . If you are working towards an uncontested divorce settlement, our Monroe family lawyers are ready to help.
  • Contested Divorce: A contested divorce in North Carolina occurs when spouses cannot agree on one or more key issues related to their divorce. As such, a court must step in and make the final decision on one or more material matters. A contested divorce can be a lengthy legal process. There is often discovery, negotiations, and possibly a trial. As a litigation-tested law firm, we are adept in handling contested divorce cases.

It is important to have an understanding of equitable distribution, which is the division of marital assets, whether you intend to resolve these issues through mutual agreement or through judicial proceedings. In either situation, your Monroe divorce lawyer will advocate an equitable method for dividing the marital estate between you and your spouse. We handle all types of divorce matters.

For help with your divorce, you should meet with our experienced divorce attorney to review your situation.

An Overview of Divorce Statistics in North Carolina

Are you preparing for a divorce in North Carolina? If so, you are not alone. Divorce is something that happens to many couples. While it can certainly be the right decision, it is never easy to actually go through the process. According to the most recent comprehensive data published by the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (NCDHHS), 32,960 married couples got divorced in the state in 2016. There were 535 divorces finalized in Union County alone that year. The National Center for Health Statistics has more recent data which shows that the divorce rate in North Carolina is somewhat higher than the national average.

Grounds for Divorce

To obtain a divorce in Monroe, family law statutes insist that you must be separated continuously for at least one year before filing for divorce with the intent to live separately and apart. Proof of fault is not required. As explained by the North Carolina Judicial Branch, our state is a no-fault divorce state. Why the marriage broke down is not an issue that needs to be adjudicated. The no-fault divorce standard can make things easier on a couple divorcing. It allows them to put the focus on more practical and future-focused issues.

Untangling Your Finances

If you have been married for any length of time, chances are good you have acquired marital property. Under North Carolina law, most property you obtained after being married is considered “marital.” This is true even if the property is in the name of only one spouse.

For example, you and your spouse might have bought a home one year after getting married with joint funds. This is marital property subject to equitable distribution even if the home or mortgage is only in your husband’s name. If you did not make a voluntary agreement to a property division prior to your divorce, you can file suit in the North Carolina courts for w equitable distribution of marital assets to divide the property between you and your spouse. Courts divide marital property equitably or fairly, not necessarily 50/50.

To better understand what property you may need the court to divide, , you should characterize all property you own as either “marital” or “separate.” Generally, separate property is anything you brought into the marriage, an inheritance, or a gift given only to you.. Separate property belongs to you. Couples also need to divide their marital debts, such as the mortgage on a home or credit card debt. It does not matter in whose name the debt is. Your divorce lawyer can help you.

Untangling your finances in a divorce is never easy. You probably have a lot of questions about what you need to do and who gets to keep what. Ultimately, there is no one answer. Property division is a highly fact-specific and case specific matter. Our Monroe, NC divorce lawyer is prepared to sit down with you, determine what constitutes separate property vs marital property, and help you determine the best option for reaching a resolution. Remember, North Carolina is an equitable distribution state. If the court has to make a decision, then it will determine what is “fair.”

We Help Divorcing Parents Decide Child Custody and Child Visitation Issues

Disputes involving children are often very emotional. Divorcing parents can agree to a custody arrangement, including visitation, but if they cannot agree then a judge can be called upon to decide what is in the children’s best interest. To determine that, judges look at many factors, such as who has provided care for the children and each parent’s physical and mental health. As a best approach to a divorce, parents should create a detailed parenting plan that explains when each parent has the children, communication times with the children and how the children will be transported and exchanged for parenting time. The more detail, the better. If parents can work together to create a plan, it allows an easier transition for both the parents and the children and makes a more effective co-parenting relationship. A thorough parenting plan can pre-empt any disputes from breaking out after the divorce has been granted. Of course, conflicts can arise. No matter your specific circumstances, our Monroe divorce and custody attorney is ready to help you navigate child custody and child visitation.

Parents of young kids also need to deal with child support. Divorce often involves one parent paying to support children to the other as well. North Carolina has guidelines that judges use to set an amount of support. However, the judge can depart from these guidelines in certain cases. Our Monroe divorce lawyers can help you negotiate and help families move on.


Alimony is a sum of money one spouse pays to his or her ex after divorce. Judges are not required to award alimony but can do so if it is necessary to prevent one spouse from becoming destitute or in the interest of fairness. For example, one spouse might have stayed home to raise the children while her husband worked. This wife could have a hard time establishing herself after divorce, so she might receive alimony temporarily while she gains work experience and/or education. In some situations, a spouse can receive permanent alimony. To be clear, alimony is not guaranteed as a matter of law in North Carolina. Working with an experienced divorce lawyer in Monroe will help your family.

Divorce in North Carolina: Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What are Some Common Causes of Divorce?

Similar to every marriage, every divorce is different. That being said, many divorcing couples tend to cite the same factors as the reason why their marriage broke down. Some of the leading reasons why people file for divorce include:

● Financial problems;

● Constant arguing;

● Marital infidelity;

● Loss of romance/intimacy.

● Lack of communication;

● Incompatibility or general growing apart;

● Substance abuse or addiction;

● Physical or emotional abuse;

● Differences in parenting styles; and

● Unrealistic expectations.

Of course, there is rarely one “cause” of a divorce. In most cases, married couples who are splitting up in North Carolina have multiple overlapping causes. Remember, North Carolina is a no-fault divorce state—meaning you do not have to provide a specific “reason” for your divorce to the court. You only have to prove that you have been separate and apart for one year prior to the filing of a divorce complaint.

What are the Different Assets Involved in a Divorce?

In North Carolina, parties to equitable distribution in divorce are required to make financial disclosures. All of the property, assets, and liabilities owned (or owed) by a couple can be part of a divorce case. Assets that are typically at issue in divorces include:

● Bank accounts;

● Investment accounts;

● Retirement accounts;

● Business interests;

● Personal property;

● Automobiles;

● Real estate, including the house; and

● Items with sentimental value.

How Does Legal Separation Differ From Divorce? How are They Similar?

In North Carolina, a separation agreement can be entered into at any time prior to getting a divorce. There is no need to separate for one year to enter a separation agreement. Most separation agreements divide assets, and deal with alimony, custody, and child support. You can get a divorce after signing a separation agreement as long as you have been separated for one year. A key difference between a separation agreement and divorce is that a separation agreement it does not “end” the marriage . You cannot get re-married to another person if you have been legally separated instead of divorced. You can get divorced without ever having a separation agreement. If you have specific questions about legal separation versus divorce, our North Carolina divorce lawyer can help.

How Long Does the Divorce Process Typically Take in North Carolina?

It depends. The duration of the divorce process in North Carolina varies significantly based on whether it is contested or uncontested. An uncontested divorce can be relatively quick. It can take anywhere between 45 days and 90 days after filing if all requirements are met. Though, remember, North Carolina generally requires a one-year separation period. Contested divorce can take significantly longer. If litigation is required, contested divorce can take more than a year. However, the attorney for one of the parties can obtain the divorce itself and allow the court process to continue with regard to the contested issues.

Do Most Divorces in North Carolina Go to Trial?

No. While it is possible in any particular case, most divorces in North Carolina do not go to trial. Instead, the majority of these cases are settled out of court—either through mediation or a less formal type of negotiation. In North Carolina, courts give divorcing couples broad discretion to reach their own divorce agreement—especially if they are represented by an attorney.

Will a Prenuptial Agreement Be Enforced in a North Carolina Divorce Case?

In North Carolina, a prenuptial agreement will be enforced in a divorce case if that contract was properly drafted and the correct procedures were followed at the time of signing. However, it is important to note that a prenup can still be challenged in court. Grounds for challenge include issues of fairness, disclosure, or duress at the time of signing. If you have any questions about a prenup, our Monroe, NC divorce attorney can help.

Why Choose the Monroe, NC Divorce Lawyers at Plyler, Long, & Corigliano, LLP?

Divorce is hard. There are a lot of legal, financial, logistical, and emotional matters that need to be worked out before a divorce can be finalized. You do not have to navigate the process all alone. At Plyler, Long & Corigliano, LLP, we are dedicated to providing clients with reliable, compassionate, and solutions-focused legal guidance and support across the full range of family law cases. Among other things, our Monroe, NC divorce attorneys are prepared to:

● Listen to your story and explain the next steps in the divorce process;

● Investigate the matter, gathering the documents and records needed to proceed;

● Handle all of the legal paperwork associated with your divorce;

● Advocate for your best interests in any divorce settlement discussions; and

● Develop a personalized legal strategy to protect your rights and interests.

We understand the one-size-fits-all solutions are not good enough for divorce cases. You deserve legal representation from a family attorney who will invest time and attention to best protect your needs. Our North Carolina divorce lawyers understand family law issues including, spousal support, child support, child custody and property division can be emotional issues and work hard to create plan to protect your interest and keep the best interest of your children in mind.. Serving Union County since 1980, you can trust our divorce attorneys when it matters.

We Put a Strong Emphasis on Helping Clients Resolve Disputes Amicably

Couples are free to come up with a separation and divorce that works for them. So long as it is fair, a judge will usually sign an Order where both parties consent. Unfortunately in the case of a contested divorce, getting squabbling couples to agree can often be difficult, but mediation, or negotiation, can help. If you are interested in divorcing amicably, contact an experienced Monroe divorce attorney at Plyler, Long & Corigliano, LLP to look out for your best interests. With experience handling both divorce mediation and collaborative divorce, we have the professional skills and proven legal expertise to help our clients find low-conflict solutions that effectively serve their best interests. At the same time, we are a trial-tested law firm that is always ready to take strong legal action to protect your rights.

Contact Our Monroe, NC Divorce Attorney for a Confidential Consultation

You can rely on our firm for a superior, highly-skilled, and professional team of Union County divorce attorneys who will take the time to understand you during this emotionally challenging experience and efficiently respond to your needs and desires. Contactour law firm at 704-289-2519. Our experienced divorce attorneys understand family law and the legal process, contact us for a consultation and allow us to keep helping families. With an office in Monroe, we provide divorce representation in Union County and throughout the surrounding area.

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