South Carolina Divorce Law

Complete Overview of of the South Carolina Divorce Laws

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Important South Carolina Divorce Guidelines to File for a Divorce

South Carolina Residency Requirements For Divorce

A three month waiting period is given if both parties are residents of the State. When filing South Carolina divorce papers, then he/she must have been a resident for a minimum of one year in order for the courts to have sufficient jurisdiction.

Grounds For Divorce In South Carolina

Common grounds stated in a South Carolina no-fault divorce are:

  • living separate and apart without cohabitation for one year.

Commonly stated grounds in a South Carolina fault based divorce are:

  • adultery;
  • alcoholism/Substance abuse;
  • willful desertion for one year;
  • physical abuse or reasonable apprehension of physical abuse.
South Carolina Child Custody

South Carolina courts tend to lean towards a joint custody ruling as it is generally in the best interest of the child. Shared custody will allow both parents to be consulted in making the important decisions involving the general welfare of the child. The courts will approve an agreement made between the divorcing parents as well, however it must be ruled that the agreement is in the best in interest of the child.

South Carolina Child Support Guidelines

To calculate any child support in South Carolina the courts will take into account the gross income of both parties while factoring in certain child related expenses. It is understood that child support will continue until the child reaches the age of 18 but can be extended through the child’s secondary education period.


A divorce will usually be heard and filed within the county in which the defendant is currently a resident. If the defendant is not a resident or if he or she cannot be located the proceeding will be heard in the plaintiff’s county of residence.


At any point before or after the initial filing of South Carolina divorce forms the couple may submit their contested issues to mediation. If the couple can come to an agreement on the contested issues the divorce may proceed on an uncontested basis.