5 Important Things to Bring to a Divorce Consultation

Nearly 50% of all marriages end in divorce.

Perhaps one of the ways you can view this shocking statistic is that if you’re going through a divorce yourself, you are not alone in your experience!

Still, knowing that you are not a trailblazer does not make the process any more comfortable for most, especially when there is no “rulebook” or “guide” to walk you through the process (there are lawyers though..)

When we start talking about bringing lawyers into your divorce discussions, we want to make sure you have a baseline understanding of what to ask (us or others).

We’ve put together a quick list of essential things to bring with you to any consultation.

Read on.

1. Bring A List of Prepared Questions 

Going through a divorce is an emotional process, but don’t let yourself mistake a divorce consultation for a therapy session. Remember, this is a time to ask legal questions and get answers you cannot find from other people.

Before you head to your divorce consultation, write down at least five questions on a piece of paper or your phone. These might vary based on your situation, but they can include asking about the lawyer’s experience, how much they charge, and what you can expect.

Do not make the mistake of “remembering them in your head.” Odds are you will get caught up in the consultation and forget at least one of your questions.

2. Bring Real Estate Information to Your Divorce Consultation

Make sure you bring along any information about the property you and your partner own. You’ll want to grab things like your escrow papers, mortgage statements, and deeds.

Do this for every property you have owned together. That includes properties you owned in the past, even if you are not currently living there.

3. Bring Relevant Legal Documents to Your Divorce Consultation

Throughout the length of your marriage, you might have gathered a large amount of legal paperwork. You should bring as many of these relevant documents as you can remember.

The most important documents include the following:

  • Separation agreements
  • Social security cards, passports, and other identifying information for you and your children
  • Your children’s birth certificates
  • Prenuptial agreements
  • Any other documents from legal proceedings regarding your partner or children

Reviewing these legal documents will allow your lawyer to better understand your situation during the divorce. They will also help your lawyer construct an estimated timeline of the divorce proceedings.

4. Bring Pay Stubs and Tax Returns to Your Divorce Consultation

Your lawyer will want to know how much money you and your spouse make for the household. To give them a good idea of how your income breaks out, bring the three most recent paystubs from both you and your partner if possible.

You should also bring your most recent tax returns as well. These returns will give your lawyer a better idea of the annual income. 

If you have to choose one of these due to discretion or lack of being able to locate them, pick the tax returns.

5. Bring Incriminating Evidence (If You Have It) to Your Divorce Consultation

You might not have any incriminating evidence, but if you do, make sure you bring it along. This evidence might include photos, videos, notes/messages, or social media posts relating to the divorce. This evidence might be proof of things like cheating or abuse.

Getting a Divorce Consultation

Make sure you go into your divorce consultation with an open mind. You might want to get certain things out of the divorce, but you might not get them all. Instead, make sure you listen to your lawyer’s expert advice.

Are you in the middle of a painful divorce?

Make sure you check out some of our legal services and see how we can help you.

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Everything You Need to Know About Alimony in SC

Are you going through a divorce in South Carolina?

Have you been divorced in South Carolina?

If you said yes to either of these questions, you’ll have considered the possibility of alimony.

If you were providing financial support during the marriage, you might have to continue to do so.

In this post, we will explain how alimony in SC works.

All About Alimony in SC

Confused about all the legal jargon and complications surrounding alimony? Read our quick, handy guide.

How Much is it?

There is no definitive formula for calculating how much alimony should be.

The amount is decided by a judge and is dependent on several factors. These can include the length of your marriage, the earning ability of each spouse, assets, health conditions, and who was at fault for the divorce.

When is Alimony Paid?

The typical alimony payment occurs on an ongoing monthly basis. However, it may also be paid in a lump sum, or in other installments.

In some cases, rehabilitative alimony is paid for a certain period of time. This alimony structure is often prescribed in cases where a spouse needs to gain skills or education in order to increase their earning potential.

Once the necessary courses or training programs required in the rehabilitative alimony decision have been completed, this kind of alimony stops.

Who Pays Alimony?

Alimony is paid to the spouse who was supported financially during the marriage. It’s usually received by the spouse who has child custody, especially if they are not expected to work full-time.

Most commonly, women are the recipients. Only 3% of people who receive alimony are men.

Marital misconduct can affect the outcome of a case. For example, if a spouse commits adultery, they’re not eligible to receive alimony under South Carolina law.

How Long is Alimony Paid for?

Alimony is usually paid until a spouse remarries or cohabits with a new partner for 90 days or more. In some cases, a spouse can receive alimony for the rest of their life.

Is Alimony Fixed?

Alimony agreements are not set in stone.

There are certain situations which are causes for alimony modification. For example, if the provider’s financial situation changes for the worse, they can request for the amount to be decreased. Likewise, the recipient can request an increase if they find themselves in financial difficulty.

If a judge decides that alimony is no longer necessary, it can also be stopped altogether.

Changes can be permanent or temporary. Either way, they need to be approved by a judge.

Is Alimony Taxed?

Those who receive alimony must pay tax on it, and include it in their income when filing their taxes.

Alimony is tax deductible for providers. However, this is due to change for divorces finalized after December 31, 2018.

Read the IRS guidelines for alimony for more details on tax and alimony.

Ask the Experts

When you are going through a divorce, it is essential that you have an attorney on your side.

At Indigo Family Law, we are experts in alimony in SC. We will guide you through the legal process, advise you on the best course of action, and fight for your rights in the courtroom to make sure you get the best possible outcome.

To see how we can help you, contact us for a consultation.

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.