Family law covers a wide range of legal practice areas, from divorce to child custody, along with anything that involves marriage, relationships, or children. It’s hard to enter into legal proceedings against your family, whether in a domestic violence case or a modification of court orders for child relocation. It’s even harder when two people, who were once on the same team, find themselves on opposite sides of the courtroom facing divorce.
Our family law team at Axelrod & Associates, P.A., understands that these are sensitive and trying times. We want you to be able to move on with your life, but at the same time, we know the importance of taking the time necessary to consider the options surrounding issues of family law. Ultimately, the families we represent must live with the choices that are made in family law proceedings. These decisions will affect our clients’ and their children’s daily lives, so we don’t ever want to rush through our family court cases. Furthermore, we strive to keep as many of our family law clients in North Myrtle Beach, SC, as possible out of court, and we have successfully mediated or negotiated countless family law cases.
Getting divorced is a difficult undertaking no matter what, especially when children are involved. It’s much harder to get divorced than it is to get married, and many couples do not realize the actual stress going through divorce can cause. Most families are not prepared for it, but when they hire a good, reputable family lawyer, they get through it and see better days ahead.
Whether a divorce is uncontested or contested, having a lawyer work through all the legal details and precisely apply South Carolina statutes to your case can be an invaluable resource when going through divorce. Having a legal representative serve as a go-between for you and your spouse further eliminates conflict because it avoids direct communication between you and them or their lawyer. Family law attorneys can actually help preserve any remaining amicable relationship in a divorce case.
There are two types of divorces in South Carolina: a fault divorce and a no-fault divorce. A no-fault divorce is granted after a one-year separation, with the couple living separately during that time. Alternatively, there are four types of fault divorces granted in South Carolina. These are:
One of the most commonly disputed areas of divorce is the division of property. South Carolina deems marital property to be any asset obtained during the marriage and non-marital property to be anything acquired prior to the marriage, including gifts or inheritances. Spouses are entitled to keep their non-marital property. Nevertheless, they must split their marital property. The split begins with a 50/50 divide, but after other influential factors are applied, the final division isn’t always equal. Thus, no two divorce cases are alike in terms of property division because there are several things that can affect the distribution of property in a divorce agreement. Factors that can affect the division of marital property include:
Several factors are incorporated into the determination of child custody issues. Whether the court rules for shared custody, partial custody, or full custody, they will always consider the interest of the child first and foremost, which means custody hearings aren’t always pleasant days for some parents. If your custody hearing didn’t go as well as you had hoped, speaking with the right family lawyer can allow you to explore options for modifying your custody order.
Child support is required in any divorce, and the amount that is to be paid is determined by the court. However, in many uncontested divorces, if the parents set forth a child support plan that is in line with state requirements, and it covers the needs of the child in accordance with the custody arrangement, the judge will usually sign off on it if it is well-considered.
Spousal support, on the other hand, is not required and usually must be requested in a divorce trial or agreed upon by both parties in an uncontested divorce. Whichever side you’re on, a qualified family law attorney can be the ideal tool for obtaining your preferred spousal support outcome in your divorce case.
There are other areas of law that fall under the category of family law, but they are less common, such as divorce, child custody, and child or spousal support. For a reputable family law firm, these areas should be just as important and approached with equal fervor and focus by its family law attorneys. Other practice areas of family law include:
A: Family law attorneys’ rates vary depending on:
This means the $247 per hour average rate of an SC family lawyer is a good starting point when budgeting for a family law attorney. However, the actual rate you are quoted for your case in your area can vary significantly.
A: For a child custody case in South Carolina, you can expect to pay upwards of $5500 to your family law attorneys, though this is an estimate. Actual lawyer fees for child support cases may be higher if the case involves exceptional circumstances. You may even pay an initial retainer fee of $5500, from which your case hours are deducted, and then as much as $500 per hour after that.
A: While the court fees for a divorce in South Carolina are only $150, the legal fees can be as much as $20,000 or more. The average cost of a South Carolina divorce is $13,000 to $15,000, which includes lawyer fees, mediation fees, and other costs that are involved with divorce in SC.
A: SC is a fault divorce state, which means at-fault divorce cases can be finalized 90 days after one party files for divorce. A no-fault divorce, which claims that no particular form of misconduct, such as adultery, has occurred to end the marriage, requires a one-year (365-day) wait period after filing.
A: For a marriage to be eligible for annulment, the circumstances of the marriage must initially meet one of the following conditions, with proof:
It doesn’t matter, though, how long the marriage lasted, as long as the applicant can prove one of the above reasons for requesting an annulment.
If your family needs legal representation for a matter in SC family court, Axelrod & Associates, P.A., is at your service. We are well-prepared to handle your case and may possibly be able to avoid litigation in some situations. Please contact Axelrod & Associates, P.A., and speak with a member of our vested legal team to schedule an appointment for a consultation. We would like to discuss your family’s needs and circumstances as they relate to family law and see how we can serve you in the most effective capacity.