Divorce papers in South Carolina — filing for divorce in SC

Online divorce in South Carolina

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How to get divorce in South Carolina

The information below will help you understand more about the divorce in South Carolina.

The common steps of how to get divorce in South Carolina


To get a divorce in South Carolina, first of all the marriage should be legal, assuming that it was made in accordance with all the rules and conditions of the state.


The spouses are eligible for residing in the state or both are residents of South Carolina.


The interested person must have reasons for deciding that he or she want a divorce in the state of South Carolina.


The interested person do not have any disputes about the marriage. If the interested person and the spouse do not agree on at least one question, then the court will make its decision regarding the dilemma. In this case, the interested person will have to go through a number of court hearings, where there will be hearings on all disputable issues.


Filing of divorce form documents. During this process, the interested person will need to fill out the South Carolina divorce papers which are required by state law.


Register the papers in the court. After that, the client should notify the spouse about the beginning of the divorce process, this is called as service the spouse. After this, the client need to wait for the court to grant a divorce.


In order to apply for a divorce in South Carolina the interested person needs to comply with the conditions of the state residence: the spouses are required to reside in the state for at least 1 year before filing a lawsuit. If both spouses live in South Carolina, the residence period is reduced to 3 months.

Also apply for divorce in South Carolina are the rights of residents of other states who are military personnel and are based in South Carolina within 1 year regardless of the intention to be a resident of the state.In order to apply for a divorce in South Carolina the spouse needs to comply with the conditions of the state residence: the spouses are required to reside in the state for at least 1 year before filing a lawsuit. If both spouses live in South Carolina, the residence period is reduced to 3 months.

Also apply for divorce in South Carolina are the rights of residents of other states who are military personnel and are based in South Carolina within 1 year regardless of the intention to be a resident of the state.

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Valid grounds to get divorce in South Carolina

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South Carolina the state with fault grounds. This means that the grounds for divorce will be any serious mistake done by the spouse, which led to a break in relations. So irrefutable evidence of guilt should be provided in the divorce form documents to the court . The main reasons for the divorce in South Carolina may be:


Adultery. A spouse committed treason while in a marriage.


The spouse committed acts of physical violence towards the interested person or the child.


The spouse is addicted to alcohol or drugs for a long period of time.


The spouse voluntarily deserted for a period of not less than 1 year.


The interested person voluntarily do not live with the spouse and do not cohabit for 1 year.

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Annulment of the marriage in South Carolina

The divorce is applied to legal marriages, and annulment is suitable for those marriages that do not have legal force.
The following conditions must be observed in order to unnul the marriage:

  • One of the spouses forced the second to marry;
  • One of the spouses fraudulently forced the second to marry;
  • One of the spouses already had a marriage with another person (which had not yet been dissolved) at the time of marriage;
  • Spouses are blood relatives;
  • At the time of marriage at least one of the spouses was under 16 years of age;
  • Spouses never cohabited;

In case of cancellation in South Carolina, the court still has the right to award custody of the child to the mother or any other parent, to divide the common property, as well as award financial support to the child or the second spouse.


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Custody of the child in South Carolina

Custody of the child

The court can decide on custody of the child or change its decision after the appearance of new factors.

The court makes a decision based on the best interests of the child, the main guardian will be the parent who is able to provide the child with the most comfortable conditions for growing up, create sufficient conditions for safety and provide medical support.

Rules for child support in South Carolina

Rules for child support in South Carolina
Courts of South Carolina oblige parents to financially support their minor children. The state usually uses the Income Shares Model for calculating child support. In determining the amount to be paid by a parent for child support and the period during which the duty of support is owed, the court shall consider the following factors:

  • Needs of the child(ren); 
  • Standard of living and economic circumstances of each parent; 
  • All sources of income and assets of each parent; 
  • Earning ability of each parent, including educational background, training, employment skills, work experience, custodial responsibility for children including the cost of providing child care and the length of time and cost of each parent to obtain training or experience for appropriate employment; 
  • Need and capacity of the child(ren) for education, including higher education; 
  • Age and health of the child and each parent; 
  • Income, assets and earning ability of the child(ren); 
  • Responsibility of the parents for the court-ordered support of others; 
  • Reasonable debts and liabilities of each child and parent; 
  • Any other factors the court may consider as relevant;


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Rules for spousal support in South Carolina

Rules for spousal support

State law provides financial assistance to one of the spouses if the court concludes that he or she really needs it. This kind of support is called alimony. Alimony is paid from one spouse to another in the certain amount for a certain period. Alimony can be of the following types:

  1. Periodic alimony - type of support, which is awarded by the court for a certain period of time and is paid monthly.
  2. Lump sum alimony - type of support, which is paid on a single request at the request of the court, the amount can be sent as one payment or to be broken into smaller ones. After the court has made a decision on lump sum alimony the amount can not be changed.
  3. Rehabilitative alimony - the type of support that is paid to an unemployed spouse to help her or him get the necessary education or skills that will help find a good job.
  4. Reimbursement alimony - the type of support whose goal is to compensate for the financial, physical or emotional support of the spouse. For example, if in a marriage one of the spouses worked and gave money to the second spouse (who did not work) for the education necessary for him or her to get a job, then the second spouse after the divorce in South Carolina will have to refund the amount spent on training to the first spouse.
  5. Separate maintenance and support - type of support, which is appointed by the court for spouses who do not seek a divorce, but live separately.

This type of alimony is paid on an ongoing basis monthly.
With a divorce in South Carolina the court will decide on the kind of alimony, their frequency and amount after the analysis of such factors:

  • Duration of marriage;
  • The age of the spouses;
  • Education of each spouse and their employment;
  • The level of physical and mental condition of each spouse;
  • Incomes of each spouse, as well as expenses and promissory notes;
  • The property of each spouse, as well as the property that was awarded by the court during the divorce


Property division in South Carolina

Property division

South Carolina is a state with a equitable apportionment.
Interested party can agree with his or her spouse about how all the common property will be divided and document it. If the interested party can not come to an agreement, the court will decide on the section after analyzing the factors that characterize the divorce. The court demands the information about the kind of property, since it is it that is subject to division. The common property is everything that was acquired by the spouses during the marriage. If the spouse have property that was obtained before marriage then it is considered private property and is not subject to division. The court takes information about the property and its value from the spouses.

Divorce without a lawyer in South Carolina

It is possible to get the divorce the services of a lawyer. Depending on which county you live, the process of divorce in the state of South Carolina can vary. If the spouses have come to the agreement of a division of property and custody of children, then it is very convenient to initiate the Pro Se Divorce.

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Mediation support in South Carolina

Under state law, in divorce in South Carolina courts require couples to use the services of intermediaries. Mediators are the third independent party whose goal is to settle the disputed issues of the spouses regarding their divorce, as well as the spouses' attrition, if the last is possible. Despite the fact that the court obliges the spouses to resort to the services of intermediaries, none of them is obligated to sign any agreement, if he or she is forced to do so. Any agreement is valid only if it is signed on a voluntary basis.

Divorce forms in South Carolina

The divorce form documents that have to be registered will vary depending on the circumstances of the divorce case. The same district in which you file a claim will demand that you fill out additional South Carolina divorce papers. The main divorce form documents that are filled are "Summons for Divorce", the "Family Court Coversheet" and the "Financial Declaration".

Uncontested divorce in South Carolina

Uncontested divorce in South Carolina

One type of divorce in South Carolina is an uncontested divorce, which is a simplified form of divorce, which is also faster and less expensive. In order to receive it, you must meet the following criteria:

  • You or your spouse reside in the state for one year or if you both are residents of South Carolina, then you need to reside in the state for 3 months before filing a paper with the court.
  • The reason for divorce is the no-fault ground, in other words, you do not insist that the spouse's misconduct resulted in breaking off relations. The reason for your divorce is that you voluntarily do not live and cohabit together for at least 1 year.
  • You do not have a common property or debt obligations.
  • You do not have common children born in wedlock, and the wife is not pregnant at the time of divorce;
  • You do not have any contentious issues regarding your divorce;

If you meet all of the above conditions, then you need to fill out the following divorce form documents: Family Court Cover Sheet, Certificate of Exemption, Summons for Divorce, Complaint for Divorce, Financial Declaration Form.

How to serve divorce papers in South Carolina

Once the interested person have filed South Carolina divorce papers in court, the interested person is bound to serve the spouse. In other words, the client must provide copies of the documents to the spouse so that he or she knows about the commencement of the divorce proceedings.

It is possible in the next ways:

  • Ask the spouse or his attorney to fill out the form "Answer and Waiver of Service";
  • Ask the sheriff to provide documents to the spouse;
  • Use a private process server serve the spouse;
  • Using "constructive service" - in a printed form to notify the spouse by posting a message in the newspaper for 30 days;
  • The simplest option is the first - to ask the spouse or his or her lawyer to fill out the appropriate form. If the location of the spouse is unknown, then the interested person should publish a message about initiating a divorce in a local newspaper, this will be considered by the court as sufficient evidence that the interested person serves his or her spouse.

The interested person have to provide the spouse a divorce form documents that list all income, debts and real estate that the interested person owns.

When the spouse is notified and all necessary South Carolina divorce papers are brought to court, he or she needed to wait for a court decision. South Carolina has a minimum three month waiting period after the papers have been filed before it will grant a divorce.

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Filing fees for divorce in South Carolina

Court filing fees are in addition to the cost of using OnlineDivorce.com. This cost may vary by county. Please check with your local courthouse to determine the exact amount.