Legal Separation in SC
If you’re considering legal separation or divorce in South Carolina, it’s likely you have a lot of questions, such as what exactly it means to be separated, how a separation differs from a divorce, and what this all means for your life following the separation.
At Harden Law, we’re here to help you answer your questions about seeking a legal separation and divorce in South Carolina. The following are a few of the questions we’re commonly asked at our practice.
What Is a Legal Separation and How Is It Different from a Divorce?
It’s important to understand that there’s technically no “separation” under South Carolina law—you and your spouse are either married or not married. Separation means you no longer live with your spouse, so if you’re still living together, you can’t be considered separated.
Remember, you are still married to your spouse even if you’re separated; it’s not the same thing as a divorce. You can’t date other people as this would be considered adultery; you can only date once your divorce has been finalized.
How Can I File for a Legal Separation in SC?
Since South Carolina doesn’t recognize legal separation, there’s no form to file. However, you may consider requesting a hearing and seeking an Order of Separate Support and Maintenance, which is an agreement approved by a judge that can protect your financial interests and secure financial support for your children.
Why Would I Seek an Order of Separate Support and Maintenance?
Many people simply choose to wait the required one year before filing for divorce in South Carolina, but obtaining an Order of Separate Support and Maintenance during this time can help you manage debt, child visitation, and martial assets until you can begin the official divorce process.
An Order of Separate Support and Maintenance can protect both you and your spouse while your separation and divorce process is underway, especially in regards to your financial interests and your children.
How Much Does a Legal Separation Cost in SC?
In addition to the cost of your attorney’s services, which will vary based on your specific attorney and their rate or fee, you’ll pay $150 to the Clerk of Court to file an action and if you need a hearing, there’s an additional $25.00 fee.
Considering Divorce in South Carolina?
When you need your questions about divorce and legal separation answered in South Carolina, we can help at Harden Law. Let us guide you through the legal process and give you sound legal advice for moving forward. Call us to schedule a consultation today at (803) 820-0048.