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Equitable Distribution

Nov 7, 2018

For Baby Boomers, divorce is booming, too

This is the third in a series of articles looking at how the aging of America’s population is affecting the practice of law. Divorce rates in the United States have been on a steady decline for decades, but one group of Americans is heading decidedly in the opposite direction. A report published by the Pew […]

Jul 13, 2016

Domestic Relations – Equitable Distribution – Separately Owned Businesses – Income – Jewelry

McMillan v. McMillan (Lawyers Weekly No. 011-068-16, 13 pp.) (John Geathers, J.) Appealed from Spartanburg County Family Court (Dale Moore Gable, J.) S.C. App. Holding: Although the plaintiff-wife testified that the parties “lived out of the company,” the preponderance of the evidence does not support an intent to transmute McMillan-Carter, Inc., which the defendant-husband separately [&hellip[...]

Jul 13, 2016

Domestic Relations – Equitable Distribution – Classification – Nonmarital Property – Real Property

Taylor-Cracraft v. Cracraft (Lawyers Weekly No. 011-067-16, 10 pp.) (James Lockemy, C.J.) Appealed from Saluda County Family Court (Kellum Allen, J.) S.C. App. Holding: Land that the plaintiff-wife owned before the marriage, leased to the parties’ corporation, and willed to her children was not transmuted into marital property. We reverse the family court’s equitable distribution […]

Jun 4, 2015

Domestic Relations — Equitable Distribution – Consent Judgment – QDRO – Husband’s Retirement Accounts

Marshall v. Marshall (Lawyers Weekly No. 010-058-15, 5 pp.) (Per Curiam) Appealed from Aiken County Family Court (Dale Moore Gable, J.) On writ of certiorari to the Court of Appeals. S.C. S. Ct. Unpub. Holding: The defendant-wife’s half of the plaintiff-husband’s two retirement accounts was represented by the amount the husband transferred to her pursuant […]

Apr 21, 2015

Domestic Relations — Divorce – Equitable Distribution – Child Custody – Attorney’s Fees – Guardian Ad Litem Fees

Brown v. Brown (Lawyers Weekly No. 011-038-15, 14 pp.) (H. Bruce Williams, J.) Appealed from Pickens County Family Court (Alex Kinlaw Jr., J.) S.C. App. Holding: Appellant-husband argues that his far greater financial contributions to the marital assets and the short (8-year) duration of the marriage entitle him to a larger share of the marital […]

Jun 6, 2012

Domestic Relations – Equitable Distribution – Valuation – Parent & Child – Custody & Support

Buist v. Buist The family court did not identify all the parties’ marital property but instead selectively divided certain real and personal property without determining the fair market value of all the property. The family court also failed to determine the direct and indirect contributions of the parties to the acquisition of the marital property. The record does not indicate a value [...]

May 30, 2012

Domestic Relations – Parent & Child – Custody & Visitation – Relocation – Equitable Distribution – Marital Debts

Bernson v. Bernson Although the family court’s supplemental order indicated that the defendant-wife agreed not to move the parties’ child out of state without the plaintiff-husband’s consent, the wife may, without the husband’s consent, move with the child out of South Carolina if she obtains an order from the family court allowing the relocation.

May 10, 2012

Domestic Relations – Equitable Distribution – Distributive Award – Alimony – Parties’ Incomes

Way v. Way The parties’ marital estate was comprised mainly of debt; in fact, the marital home was so encumbered by mortgages that it had a negative value. The most substantial positively valued assets were the parties’ vehicles: the husband’s truck was valued at $1,885 and the wife’s car was valued at either $4,590 or $5,100.

Mar 7, 2012

Domestic Relations – Alimony – Social Security Eligibility – Equitable Distribution – Economic Contributions – Length of Marriage

Crossland v. Crossland Although the defendant-wife testified at the divorce hearing that she was eligible for Social Security benefits but had not applied for them, there is no evidence in the record that the family court considered the wife’s eligibility for Social Security benefits when it decided to award her alimony of $958.50 per month.

Dec 28, 2011

Domestic Relations – Equitable Distribution – Classification — Inheritance – Commingled – Valuation Date

Sanders v. Sanders Where the plaintiff-wife placed her inheritance into an account that she used to pay marital expenses, this evidence supports the trial court’s conclusion that the wife’s inheritance was transmuted into marital property. We affirm the trial court’s inclusion of the wife’s AG Edwards account as a marital asset, the valuation of the marital residence, and the e[...]

Dec 19, 2011

Domestic Relations – Equitable Distribution – Classification – Separate Property – Mortgage Payments – Unequal Division – Attorney’s Fees

Fitzwater v. Fitzwater The husband came into the parties’ marriage with three properties. One of those properties (the Antioch property) remained his separate property despite the use of marital funds to pay down its mortgage. The proceeds from the mortgage on the Antioch property were used to pay for improvements to a marital property.

Nov 10, 2011

Domestic Relations – Divorce – Habitual Drunkenness – Civil Practice – Continuance – Equitable Distribution – Classification

Snipes v. Snipes Where (1) the husband does not dispute he was using narcotic drugs prescribed by his physician, (2) the wife offered uncontradicted testimony that the husband was frequently intoxicated because of the medication, (3) the wife observed that the husband “took too much” of the medication for a period much longer than needed to recuperate from his surgeries and would some[...]

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