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My friend is in the military and she asked her spouse of…

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Okay so my friend is...
Okay so my friend is in the military and she asked her spouse of only months for a divorce. He has said he has proof she has cheated and he will not sign papers unless she signs stating the adulterous acts were true. They both live in South Carolina and she feels trapped and wants to know how to get a divorce.
Submitted: 1 month ago.Category: Family Law
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Answered in 8 minutes by:
3/10/2018
Family Lawyer: Sean K, Family Law Attorney replied 1 month ago
Sean K
Sean K, Family Law Attorney
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 422
Experience: Family Law Attorney in Private Law Firm
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Hi, I’m Sean and I will be assisting you as an expert today. I’m an attorney with more than 20 years of experience. It is my goal to provide a solid overview of your situation. Whether the analysis is good or bad as to your matter, I want to make sure you understand any points you need and that you have options to better address the questions you have. If I am able, I will also provide you with some resources. Please note that the system, independent from me, may offer a phone call. You are not obligated to engage in a phone call, but I am happy to speak if you desire. This is completely up to you.

I am sorry to hear that your friend is having this issue.

Do they parties have children?

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Customer reply replied 1 month ago
No
Family Lawyer: Sean K, Family Law Attorney replied 1 month ago

Good to know. Give me a moment and I will set out an overview.

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Family Lawyer: Sean K, Family Law Attorney replied 1 month ago

In South Carolina, there is no requirement that one spouse "sign" any papers for a divorce. If there is a basis, or grounds for the divorce, then so long as the spouse seeking the divorce can prove it, then the divorce will be granted, even over the objection of the other spouse.

Now if they have been married several months, unless she has some documentation that he has committed a fault ground - habitual drunkenness (to include substance abuse), physical cruelty, or adultery, she would have to separate and live apart from him for 365 days then ask the Court for a divorce. This timeline starts when the separation and she does not need the Court's permission.

I should also point out that there is no requirement in SC that one spouse sign any document admitting to any fault based ground, especially adultery. Though rarely prosecuted, adultery in South Carolina is still a criminal act so your friend should not, as I said, sign anything like he is asking.

If the husband did have proof, she could not stop him from pursuing a divorce on adultery, but she could never be required to offer proof or testimony. As well, if in a divorce proceeding there was evidence of adultery, no criminal issue would result, this just doesn't happen.

So for a divorce the first thing she needs to do is separation and start the 1 year separation period. If there is a fault based ground as set out above, that could be pursued.

For such a short marriage, there should be minimal if any property to divide so it would just be an issue of the divorce.

Please note: This is general information for educational purposes only and is not legal advice. There is no specific course of action is proposed and no attorney-client relationship or privilege formed within this conversation.

If you have any follow up questions it would be my pleasure to answer them. As experts we only get credit for the time and effort we spend on our answers if you rate us positively - 5 stars is definitely appreciated but not required! There is no cost associated with you rating me and you can still ask follow up questions after rating me and I will respond.

One final point, there may be a delay between your question and my answer; this is because I'm either not at my computer or helping someone else but rest assured, if you ask, I will provide an answer. Thank you again.

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Family Lawyer: Sean K, Family Law Attorney replied 1 month ago

I wanted to follow up and see if there were any further questions.

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DISCLAIMER: Answers from Experts on JustAnswer are not substitutes for the advice of an attorney. JustAnswer is a public forum and questions and responses are not private or confidential or protected by the attorney-client privilege. The Expert above is not your attorney, and the response above is not legal advice. You should not read this response to propose specific action or address specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law that might affect the situation you describe. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances must be done by a lawyer who has spoken with you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on these general principles, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction to which your question pertains.

The responses above are from individual Experts, not JustAnswer. The site and services are provided “as is”. To view the verified credential of an Expert, click on the “Verified” symbol in the Expert’s profile. This site is not for emergency questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals. Please carefully read the Terms of Service (last updated February 8, 2012).

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