As the weather warms, a spontaneous getaway or extended vacation to the mountains of North Carolina can offer a wonderful way to relieve some stress for residents in Charlotte and Mecklenburg County. While our state offers beautiful views and limitless natural experiences on famous roads like the Blue Ridge Parkway and the Cherohala Skyway, clear weather and road conditions can become unpredictable in high elevations and remote areas, and car accidents in these areas can prove especially dangerous. Continue reading “Stay Safe: 9 Tips for Driving Through Mountains, Hills, and Remote Areas”
We frequently hear in the news that celebrities have “filed for divorce” right after they separate, which gives people the impression that a divorce is as simple as waking up one day and deciding you’re finished being married. The law in North Carolina, however, doesn’t quite work this way.
When a marriage ends in North Carolina, or when unmarried people who have a child break up, both parents are responsible for providing support to their child or children. However, the court generally assumes that the parent who has sole or primary physical custody of the child (the “custodial parent”) is paying child support “by default” — meaning that the custodial parent is most likely spending the required amount of child support directly on the child as long as they’re providing adequate day-to-day care.
No one gets married expecting to later divorce, which means that they usually don’t give much thought to who owns what property in the marriage unless a divorce becomes inevitable. When the unfortunate happens and the prospect of separation begins to loom, the process of sorting out the tangle of shared property can suddenly seem frustrating and even overwhelming.
In these situations, learning about the legal principles courts use to divide marital property during a divorce can clear up some of the confusion and help you understand what to expect. To help, we’ve composed a quick guide to the legal logic behind property division during a divorce.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that on average, two people are killed daily in the United States in bicycle-vehicle crashes, totaling upward of 700 deaths per year. With North Carolina being a popular bike-friendly state for cycling enthusiasts, state residents in both urban and rural areas need to educate themselves about the state’s biking laws and policies. Continue reading “Sharing the Road: Basic Bicycle Safety Laws in North Carolina”
Last June, the Supreme Court legalized same-sex marriage in all 50 states in the landmark Obergefell v. Hodges decision. While gay couples in North Carolina had already won their right to marry after the 2014 U.S. District Court ruling in General Synod of the United Church of Christ v. Cooper, the decision in Obergefell still made a massive impact in our state and everywhere else — same-sex couples can now marry anytime, anywhere, and in any state without worrying that their marriage won’t be recognized elsewhere due to differing state laws regarding gay marriage.
While Obergefell stripped away the complicated patchwork of state statutes on same-sex marriage, it has created a whole new host of legal concerns for same-sex couples, especially those who marry and then later decide to divorce. Since a full legal marriage has only been an option for gay couples in North Carolina for about two years (and less in some other states), these couples may not have had time to familiarize themselves with some of the family law issues that now apply to them.
When a marriage ends, the court commonly orders one spouse to provide financial support to the other for a period of time — sometimes even indefinitely. This mandatory payment to a former spouse is called “spousal support,” although the average person will probably recognize it by the more familiar term “alimony.”
“Tort Reform” in Action
Although “tort reform” is a popular political talking point for many public officials — especially during an election year such as this one — few people really understand what proposed tort reform measures mean for actual personal injury victims when put into practice. One particular law that passed several years ago in North Carolina continues to exemplify how so-called “tort reform” measures can deny justice to injury victims.