What is The Divorce Decree in North Carolina Divorce?
The divorce decree is the court’s formal order granting the termination of marriage. When the divorce decree is signed by the judge and dated by the court clerk, you are officially and formally divorced and free from the bonds of matrimony.
Both parties may also sign the divorce decree, but the judge’s signature makes it official.
Components of a Divorce Decree
In case of a contested divorce, where the parties have failed to reach a consensus on various issues and if these issues have been brought to trial, the divorce decree incorporates the terms with regard to those issues. The issues considered in the divorce decree usually include child support and custody, visitation schedules, property distribution and issues of alimony.
The terms contained in the divorce decree are legally enforceable and violation of the same can attract contempt of court action. It is possible to obtain the divorce decree without having reached a settlement on above issues. But in that case, rights to alimony and equitable property distribution are lost. A divorce decree does not affect child custody and child support issues.
Implications of the Divorce Decree
The divorce decree is a legal document, establishing proof that the divorce is final. Such proof may be needed by parties on several occasions, particularly when they wish to remarry. A divorce decree however does not relieve the parties of their joint contracts such as financial debts, for which they will continue to remain responsible, if they have taken on the financial obligation together.
A copy of the divorce decree is handed over to both parties. The record is maintained in the vital records office of the courthouse. If additional copies are needed, they can be obtained from the court’s clerk for a fee.
We at McIlveen Law Firm have helped numerous clients through their divorce processes. We can assist with obtaining the divorce decree. Our professional representation of the facts related to your case will aim to keep the terms in the divorce decree favorable to you.