Overview of Divorce in South Carolina

Before beginning the process of filing for a divorce, it is important to get familiar with the divorce laws of the state in which you plan to file.  Luckily, the laws in South Carolina are not very complicated or difficult to understand.

Grounds for Filing for Divorce

In South Carolina, the courts will grant divorce on several different grounds.  If both spouses agree and would prefer a ‘no fault’ divorce, the courts will grant this if the husband and wife have lived apart for at least one year.  If this is not the case, though, there are other grounds for which divorce can be granted:

  • Adultery
  • Desertion for at least one year
  • Physical cruelty or abuse
  • Habitual drunkenness (this includes the habitual usage of narcotic drugs)
If you may need legal assistance with a Divorce matter, consult with a Divorce Attorney in your area to receive a free case review.

Spousal Support Concerns

This is, of course, decided on a case-by-case basis.  Additionally, the courts may decide to make it either permanent or temporary.  Many factors are taken into account when deciding upon spousal support.  South Carolina courts consider these issues (among others):

  • Marriage duration
  • Current income and income potential of each spouse
  • Standard of living established during the marriage
  • Current expenses of each spouse
  • Custody of any children
  • Marital misconduct of either spouse

Child Support Factors

Just as there are many issues to consider when thinking about spousal support, there is quite a lot to take into account when considering child support for the spouse who has custody of the children.

South Carolina does follow the Income Shares Model for calculating support.  This model takes the parents’ incomes and uses guidelines to determine monthly support amounts from that information.  However, the courts in South Carolina will deviate from the Income Shares guideline amounts in some cases.  The courts look at several factors to figure out if a different child support amount would be more appropriate.  Here are the issues that the courts examine:

  • Educational expenses for the children
  • Property distribution
  • Debts of either spouse
  • Expenses of families with more than six children
  • Medical or dental expenses for either parent for which they are not being reimbursed
  • Mandatory deductions from paychecks of retirement pensions, union fees, or other dues
  • Support obligation amounts for other dependents in the household
  • Monthly fixed payments mandated by a court
  • Alimony
  • Substantial difference between the income of one parent and the income of another


If you may need legal assistance with a Divorce matter, consult with a Divorce Attorney in your area to receive a free case review.