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South Carolina Has the Fourth Longest Wait Time for Divorces in the Nation


If you have filed for a divorce in South Carolina, you should be prepared to wait more than a year, a new study has revealed.

A recent report featured in T he Huffington Post found in South Carolina the "minimum total processing time" for a divorce is 450 days. It's the fourth longest wait in the nation, reinforcing the fact divorce can be a tortuous process in the Palmetto State.

The same report found South Carolina scored just 27 out of 100 when it came to "ease of filing" for divorce – also the fourth-worst in America.

The divorce table in The Huffington Post was drawn from data provided by the American Bar Association, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and 2011 Census Bureau figures. The rate is derived from the number of people who identify as divorced per 1,000 residents.

Arkansas is that state with the longest waiting times for divorce. The minimum processing time in the southern state is 540 days, while the processing time is 510 days in Rhode Island. In contrast in Nevada a divorce can be obtained in 42 days.

Divorces can take longer if they are contested and involve many assets. A recent Yahoo article pointed out celebrity divorces often take a long time and the two years it took Demi Moore and Ashton Kutcher to divorce, is not unusual in Hollywood splits.

Some commentators have claimed in South Carolina the conservative nature of the state and the strong hold of religion, means it is not in the interest of lawmakers to encourage divorce. The divorce situation in South Carolina is complicated by the fact it recognizes both fault and no fault divorces. If a spouse believes that the marriage should end, then he or she can file for divorce based on the fault grounds of adultery, physical cruelty, desertion, or habitual drunkenness or they may file on the no fault ground of one year continuous separation.

Divorce is no mere formality in South Carolina. If you are facing a divorce, you will need to consider issues such as custody of children, child support, visitation, property division and alimony payment issues.

In a contested divorce, these areas can quickly become battlegrounds. The Masella Law Firm has years of experience and a proven track record of success in these complex cases. Call us at 803.748.9990.

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