Articles Tagged with family lawyer

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Custody and Deployment

Being deployed or stationed somewhere that your child cannot follow is a major stressor for parents in the military. How will your child do without you? What will your life be like without them around? If you are not with your child’s other parent, you also have another concern – what will happen to your custody arrangement while you are gone? Will the other parent allow your family members to maintain their relationships with your child? In case there isn’t already a plan in place for your deployment, the courts in North Carolina have a process to help you get any custody issues settled before you leave. Continue reading →

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Preston v. Preston, 2022-NCCOA-207.

Facts: Plaintiff and Defendant married in 1988, and began divorce proceedings in 2018. Plaintiff filed his claim for divorce in October of 2018. In July 2019, Defendant filed her answer with motions to dismiss for lack of subject matter jurisdiction, improper venue, insufficiency of process, failure to state a claim, and a motion for sanctions. Defendant’s chief argument was that Plaintiff was not a resident of North Carolina and not a resident of Mecklenburg County. The trial court found otherwise. In an interesting turn of events, Defendant verified her complaint for postseparation support, alimony, equitable distribution and fees just a day before the hearing for her motions to dismiss. In her complaint Defendant actually stated that Plaintiff was a resident of North Carolina. Her complaint was then filed an hour after the hearing on the motions to dismiss. Defendant later filed a motion to stay the divorce, which was denied. Plaintiff then motioned for Rule 11 sanctions based on Defendant’s conduct. The trial court granted and ordered that Defendant pay $15,000 in fees to Plaintiff. Defendant appealed. Continue reading →

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Parents Stationed in the US

If you are a parent and a member of the US Military, we at Woodruff Family Law Group thank you for your service! If you are not with your child’s other parent, you are probably concerned about what your military service will mean for your custody agreement or custody battle. Being in the military limits where you can live, when you can have leave, and what your daily schedule will be. How will that impact your children? What will a court think about those impacts? Fortunately, the federal and North Carolina state governments have acted to provide you with some protections in these situations. Continue reading →

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Shropshire v. Shropshire, 2022-NCCOA-441.


Plaintiff and Defendant separated and initiated a case for Equitable distribution (ED). Pursuant to a pretrial Order, the parties filed affidavits for the ED trial. Both parties listed retirement plans under the “marital property” section of the affidavit. This included the Plaintiff’s 401(k) plan. Furthermore, both parties designated that Plaintiff’s retirement plans had values to be determined for date of separation and “net” value. Under the section of the affidavit marked for “divisible property,” neither party listed any property.

In a hearing in August of 2018, the parties testified about ED. In October 2018, the trial court judge told the parties that evidence was going to be reopened so that evidence could be presented that showed the date of trial values for the retirement plans, as well as value of the marital residence. Plaintiff objected to the reopening and filed a motion to recuse.

The motion was denied in trial court and the reopening was allowed. The information was provided over objections, and a final ED order was entered. Plaintiff appealed. Continue reading →

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Wooten v. Wooten, 867 S.E.2d 767 (N.C. Ct. App. 2022)

Wooten v. Wooten came before the North Carolina Court of Appeals on Defendant Husband’s appeal of the trial court’s Summary Judgment ordering specific performance by both parties.

FACTS: The parties married in 1997 and divorced in 2016. When they divorced, they signed a Separation Agreement that stated that Defendant Husband would pay Plaintiff Wife $4000 per month and put $8500 per year into the children’s 529 educational savings plans. Continue reading →

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Wake Co. obo Williams v. Wiley, 2022-NCCOA-402.

Facts: Defendant was ordered to pay child support to Plaintiff in an order from Maryland entered in 2007. For enforcement, the order was to be filed in Wake County. At that time, Defendant was over $42,000 in arrears. Plaintiff filed their notice for registration of the Maryland order and later confirmed the registration through a default judgment in 2018. Defendant next filed a motion to set aside the confirmation because she alleged that she was not properly noticed of the hearing. The trial court denied. Defendant also sought to dismiss the confirmation pursuant to a motion filed under Rule 12(b)(2), (4), and (5). These were also denied. Defendant appealed. Continue reading →

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A person who is or plans to be a parent and has been or is considering engaging in sex work, either legal or illegal, needs to consider how that work will impact any future custody cases. Despite recent movement toward decriminalization of prostitution and increasing acceptance of internet-based sex work, such as the use of platforms like OnlyFans, sex work and any other sexual behavior can and likely will be considered by a judge when determining child custody. But don’t despair! Sex work is only one of many factors considered and, with a strong defense, you can still get custody of your child. Continue reading →

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Brady v. Brady, 2022 NCCOA 200 (N.C. Ct. App. 2022)

Brady v. Brady came before the NC Court of Appeals on Defendant Husband’s appeal.

ISSUE: What findings of facts are required to support awards of alimony, a distributive award, and the unequal distribution of assets. Continue reading →

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Discovery is the next step of a family law case prior to a hearing. Discovery is the process of asking for and providing evidence between parties prior to a hearing. Discovery looks for all relevant evidence that isn’t privileged, but those words don’t necessarily mean the same thing in the law that they do in regular life.

The Family Law Process – Part 7: Discovery (Rules 26-37)

Sometimes in a family law case, all efforts to negotiate or mediate fail and a hearing is necessary. In order to make your case to the judge, you will need proof of your claims. But what is your recourse if the other party has all of the information? How can you prove that your spouse makes more than you, for instance, without access to their paystubs or bank statements? Or the value of their car if you don’t know how much is still owed on it? Luckily, the court provides a way to get that information: Discovery.

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Recent high-profile trials have been live-streamed with great success. The Depp-Heard defamation trial and Rittenhouse prosecution were widely watched by many across the entire world through new media channels such as YouTube, as well as traditional television broadcasting. Recently, someone asked me if North Carolina would allow cameras into our courtrooms for similar high-profile cases. Remarkably, the Rules of Practice for Superior and District Court already allow them to do so. Continue reading →