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Family law

Separation agreements attorneys

A legal separation agreement can be helpful in outlining how to divide your property and assets, how to handle child custody and spousal support or child support payments.

In North Carolina, a divorce is a two-step process: at least 365 days of separation followed by the absolute divorce. Separation begins as soon as you and your spouse begin living apart from each other, and it doesn’t necessarily require paperwork.

However, a legal separation agreement can be helpful in outlining how to divide your property and assets, how to handle child custody and spousal support or child support payments. Separation agreements are not binding until both spouses sign, but once signed they are likely to have profound effects on the rest of your divorce proceedings.

Under a separation agreement, you are still legally married. During your divorce proceedings, a judge will review your separation agreement and decide whether or not to include it in your divorce settlement. Because a separation agreement can become part of your divorce rulings, legally binding you to the terms you and your spouse included in it, Dozier Miller strongly recommends having an experienced divorce lawyer review the agreement before you sign it.

We’ll advise you on the tough questions such as how the separation agreement might affect your financial future, your rights to spousal support, your chances of gaining custody of your children, and protective orders against your spouse. We can also help you draft agreements or tighten up the language in your spouse’s draft, so nothing is left open to multiple interpretations in the long run.


No matter what causes it, the end of a marriage is an emotionally devastating event made more complex by North Carolina’s complicated filing processes. We recommend consulting one of our attorneys before you even discuss divorce.


We’ve got experience on both sides of child support cases, which gives us excellent perspective. We’ll ensure your rights are protected while we work toward the best solution for your child.


Divorce is emotionally challenging for adults; for kids, it can be crushing. We advocate swift, peaceful resolutions so kids can regain stability post-divorce. We’ll walk you through the benefits and challenges of each custody scenario to find the one that best serves you and your children.


For many people, considering a divorce also means taking a hard look at your financial situation, and wondering how it may change if you end your marriage. Our divorce attorneys are well versed in all the financial aspects of ending a marriage, and their experience negotiating spousal support and alimony means you don’t need a separate alimony lawyer.


Marriages involve a lot of STUFF: vehicles, houses, bank accounts, household appliances and furniture, your movie collection, and much, much more. While most people assume divorce means splitting all of your possessions 50/50, that’s not always the case. An equitable distribution attorney can help steer you through the court’s distribution of your marital property, ensuring you receive a fair share.


At its core, marriage is a contract between two people. We encourage you and your fiancé to consider the benefits of outlining expectations ahead of your union.

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