If you are a South Carolina resident and want to file for divorce, then you will want to determine whether or not your divorce is at-fault or a no-fault divorce. There are four major reasons that you can file an at-fault divorce in this state. Oftentimes, if you can file an at-fault marriage then you should. This is because the court may favor you when it comes to property distribution or child custody battles depending on the circumstances of your divorce. In no-fault divorces, it is harder for the courts to determine who is supposed to receive the child or who should be given certain valuables that are shared property. In an at-fault divorce, the court will often just favor the victim when it comes to gray areas.
The first reason that you can file an at-fault divorce in South Carolina is because of adultery. This is when a spouse is sexually unfaithful and carries on an extramarital affair. Any instance of sex outside of marriage can constitute adultery. In order to file an at-fault divorce, the spouse may need to prove that his or her spouse has been involved with another person. Evidence on a cell phone or computer will often suffice. Because many spouses will make empty claims about adultery, a spouse who is served at-fault divorce papers often has the right to challenge them. If the court cannot determine that adultery took place in the marriage, they will deal with the divorce as a no-fault instance.
Another reason that a spouse can divorce at-fault is when there is physical cruelty involved in the relationship. This is also called domestic violence. It is easiest to prove that physical violence took place in a relationship when there are police records to back this up. If a spouse is arrested for domestic violence at some point within the marriage, then these records can be the proof necessary to show that the spouse was battered. Oftentimes spouses that are proven guilty of physical cruelty will lose out on many divorce privileges including right to time with the children. They also typically need to pay alimony or spousal support to the victimized spouse as a part of the divorce settlement.
As well, you can file an at-fault divorce against your spouse if he or she is a substance abuser. Heavy alcoholics and drug users fall into this category. Like with domestic abuse cases, police records are often helpful in backing up this claim in the divorce papers. If you can prove that your spouse has been arrested for the use of narcotics or has been continually charged with alcohol-related offenses, then this may be evidence of his or her addiction. As well, photographic evidence or video tapes can help. Spouses with addiction problems probably will not receive custody of the children in any capacity and will need to pay alimony or spousal support to the other spouse.
Lastly, a spouse can file for an at-fault divorce if he or she was deserted. This means that the other spouse just up and walked away. In situations where a spouse runs away and never returns, it is typically accepted that a divorce is necessary. In order to complete the divorce process it is helpful to contact the spouse that deserted the family. Contact a Lexington divorce attorney if you have any questions about at-fault divorce or want to discuss your particular case with a professional who can give you sound advice. With the right attorney on your side, you will have the opportunity to carefully work through your divorce and take care of all the details.