I Want a Divorce…Does My Spouse Have to Agree?

Carole Albright

You do not have to have your spouse’s consent to obtain a divorce; however, there are several facts that must exist in order to get divorced.  In North Carolina, a husband or wife can file for divorce so long as the parties have been physically separated for more than a year with at least one of the parties intending to remain separate and apart, at least one of you has been a citizen and resident of the State of North Carolina for at least 6 months prior to filing the action and the other spouse is not an active member of the United States Armed Services.  So long as you and your spouse have lived in separate homes (separate rooms or separate buildings on the same property does not count) for a year and a day, you can file for divorce even if your spouse objects.

Divorces have to be filed with the courts; therefore, you must formally serve your spouse with the lawsuit requesting a divorce and this is where they can make it challenging.  If you do not have a good address for your spouse or they hide or dodge service, they can delay the divorce but once you get them served, they cannot prevent the divorce from being granted so long as the other requirements set out above are met.  North Carolina is a “no fault” divorce state so all you have to show is that you were married and have been separated more than a year before filing; no allegations of abuse or abandonment, for example, need to be alleged.  If you need assistance filing for divorce or getting your spouse served, give Law Firm Carolinas with offices in Greensboro, Charlotte, Wilmington and the Triangle a call and one of our family law attorneys will be happy to help.

Family Law