Contesting a Divorce
A question that often comes up with potential clients is related to a spouse contesting the divorce. In North Carolina, divorce is a no-fault cause of action, meaning that once the requirements are met–one year physical separation with the intent of ONE of the parties to end the marriage and one of the parties residing in North Carolina for at least 6 months prior to filing the divorce, the divorce will be granted. Basically, there is no requirement that both parties agree to divorce. As long as the parties have not reconciled their marriage during that one year physical separation period, a divorce will be granted even against the “wishes” of the opposing party.
The most common scenario in contesting something related to an absolute divorce is the date of separation. Since this may not be correctly alleged by the initiating party and can sometimes trigger other things like discontinuance of healthcare insurance coverage, there may be a reason to “contest” the date of separation, but this doesn’t happen very often. If you are served with a divorce complaint, it is very important to consult an attorney to ensure you are not giving up any potential marital claims.