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RobertJDFL
RobertJDFL, Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 12132
Experience:  Experienced in multiple areas of the law.
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Do you have to be separated not living with the spouse to

Customer Question

Do you have to be separated not living with the spouse to get a divorce.
Submitted: 6 months ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  RobertJDFL replied 6 months ago.

Thank you for using Just Answer. I look forward to assisting you tonight.

No, there is no law that requires you to be separated or living in separate houses before you file -many people do this because of financial reasons. You can still file for divorce. While still living together you will have to convince the Judge assigned to the case that irreconcilable differences have caused an irretreivable breakdown of the marriage and if you have lived as roommates and not as spouses(no sex) then you will get a divorce. In other words, you can still show you are living "apart" by sleeping in separate rooms.

If you need clarification or additional information, please reply and I'll be happy to assist further. Otherwise, please remember to leave a positive rating for me by clicking on the stars before you sign out, so that I am paid for my time and assistance this evening. Thank you!

Customer: replied 6 months ago.
I understand perfectly well. we have not lived as husband and wife for twenty two years.
Customer: replied 6 months ago.
how shall I succeed?
Customer: replied 6 months ago.
my no
Expert:  RobertJDFL replied 6 months ago.

I just saw you were in South Carolina --my apologies, as that will change my answer slightly (I was looking at another state's laws because I misread it).

Courts in South Carolina recognizes four “fault” grounds for divorce:

In addition, there is one “no-fault” ground recognized by South Carolina courts, called “Living Separate and Apart for One Year Without Cohabitation.”

Under South Carolina law, a separation is when the parties live in two separate locations. Living in two separate bedrooms in one house does not qualify, though if you have a separate garage apartment or guest house, that may qualify.

In the absence of the above, you would have to file on grounds of adultery. You don't need direct evidence or a "smoking gun" as evidence. A showing that the accused spouse and the paramour (the person he is cheating with) were disposed to commit adultery and had an opportunity to do so will meet the plaintiff spouse’s initial burden, even absent direct evidence.

Accordingly, adultery may be proven by circumstantial evidence that establishes both a disposition to commit the offense and the opportunity to do so. Hartley v. Hartley, 292 S.C. 245, 246-47, 355 S.E.2d 869, 871 (Ct.App.1987). As one appellate court has noted, “Because adultery, by its very nature, is an activity which takes place in private, it may be proved by circumstantial evidence. Indeed, if it were not for circumstantial evidence, the practice of adultery would scarcely be known to exist.Prevatte v. Prevatte, 297 S.C. 345, 377 S.E.2d 114, 118 (Ct.App. 1989) (citations omitted; emphasis added).

Generally, “proof must be sufficiently definite to identify the time and place of the offense and the circumstances under which it was committed.” Loftis v. Loftis, 284 S.C. 216, 218, 325 S.E.2d 73, 74 (Ct.App.1985).

Evidence of adultery can include things like romantic cards, love letters, text messages, emails, as well as things like receipts for gifts bought for the paramour, hotel receipts, trip expenses, etc.

Expert:  RobertJDFL replied 6 months ago.

Did you have any follow-up questions or need clarification about any part of my answer? If yes, please REPLY, and I'm happy to continue assisting. If not, please remember to leave a positive rating for me by clicking on the stars, so that I am credited for my time. Thank you!

Expert:  RobertJDFL replied 5 months ago.

Just following up with you. Did you need clarification or additional information about my answer? If so, please reply, I'm happy to assist further. Otherwise, please remember to leave a positive rating for me by clicking on the stars, as experts are not employees of this site and we are only paid if you leave a positive rating. Thank you.

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