What Are the Grounds for Divorce in South Carolina?

February 22, 2024
Family Law

Divorces in South Carolina can be contested or uncontested. Contested divorces typically involve disputes about child custody, property, alimony/spousal support and assets. When emotions run high, a skilled divorce lawyer in Lancaster or Rock Hill, South Carolina, may be necessary to help settle your marital affairs and protect your best interests.

There Are 4 Marital Fault Grounds for Divorce in South Carolina

Divorces can be granted under fault and no-fault grounds. No-fault divorce is a popular choice, where neither spouse blames the other for the end of the marriage. No-Fault Divorce requires at least one (1) year continuous separation from each other. However, marital fault can only be granted under specific circumstances.

South Carolina law recognizes the following grounds for at-fault divorces:

  • Adultery
  • Habitual drunkenness
  • Desertion
  • Physical cruelty

While other states recognize mental abuse as grounds for divorce, South Carolina does not.

Why Do You Need a Rock Hill Divorce Attorney?

Establishing the grounds for a divorce can be very difficult in South Carolina. The burden of proof is on the spouse who files for the divorce. Grounds for fault-based divorces influence spousal support and the distribution of marital assets.

For example, South Carolina is not a community property state. Marital property does not have to be distributed evenly between both spouses. Instead, one spouse could walk away from the marriage with a greater share. Having a lawyer represent your best interests during the divorce proceedings can prevent an unfair distribution of marital assets.

In addition, child custody, support, and alimony are often highly contentious topics during a divorce. An experienced family law attorney can help you fight for the divorce settlement you deserve.

What Are the Most Common Reasons for Divorce?

Marriages end for many different reasons. However, it is important to understand that motives for a divorce are not the same as grounds.

According to a recent study, the most common motives for divorce are as follows:

  • 75% cited a lack of commitment
  • 59.6% reported infidelity
  • 57.5% cited too much conflict
  • 45.1% reportedly felt they married too young
  • 36.1% referenced financial problems in the marriage

Under South Carolina law, reasons like lack of commitment and excessive arguing will not justify a divorce. Many couples have multiple reasons for wanting to end their marriage. Speaking to a qualified divorce attorney in Lancaster or Rock Hill, South Carolina, can help you translate your desire for divorce into legal grounds.

When to Call a Divorce Lawyer in Lancaster or Rock Hill, SC?

Whether you are thinking about ending your marriage or have already begun living separately, consulting a knowledgeable South Carolina divorce lawyer is critical. At Barboza Law, our legal team is here to help you address your goals and desires for life after marriage.

Call (803) 973-6003 to speak with a family law attorney in Rock Hill, South Carolina, and discuss your unique family matters.