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Family Law in North Carolina – Part 1

One of our primary areas of focus at Welch and Avery is family law in North Carolina.  A significant number of the people we speak to have come to us with questions about this area of the law.  Today we are going to begin a series of blog posts that help explain family law and the most commonly encountered issues that arise out of it. To begin, let’s take a look at what sorts of issues might be covered when we talk about Family Law.

Family law Defined

“Family Law” is really a broad category that covers a spectrum of legal issues that apply to family relationships.  Most commonly this area of the law is concerned with marriage, separation and divorce, separation agreements, alimony and post-separation support, child custody, child visitation, paternity and other related issues.

When we talk about family law we are in general using a term that addresses the legal issues that arise out of being married or having children.

Family Law Issues

Family law is almost entirely based on state law. Because the laws themselves vary significantly from state to state the answers to questions can also be quite different.  This is why it is vital to first speak to a family law attorney in your area whenever you need advice.  If you are located in North Carolina then you should start with a North Carolina family law attorney who can either advise you on the local laws or explain the proper jurisdiction to address your concern.

But what kind of issues should you ask a lawyer about? While we will discuss specific topics in much more detail in the coming weeks and months, here are some of the most commonly encountered family law issues that people in Onslow County, North Carolina, talk to us about:

  • Marriage. What you have to do to get married? What rights come with being married? What kind of rights, and obligations, do spouses have with one another?
  • Divorce. What do you need to do to get divorced? What happens after you file for divorce? Who has to pay alimony?
  • Custody. What happens if you have a child with someone but are not married to that person? What about child custody if you are getting divorced? Who gets visitation, and who has to pay child support?
  • Adoption. How can you adopt a child? What legal steps do you have to take to ensure your adoption goes smoothly?
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