Can I Change My Mind About a Divorce?

Posted by Jonathan Jerkins | Apr 12, 2018 | 0 Comments

A divorce in North Carolina is known as an “absolute divorce.” This means that once a judge signs the judgment for an absolute divorce, the divorce is final. After the order is issued you cannot change your mind or have the court reinstate your marriage. The only option going forward if you want to stay married is to get remarried.

Getting a divorce is a serious decision and should not be taken lightly. Couples may have their problems and go through difficult times, but a divorce is not always the solution. Individuals should take the time to consider their options before deciding to go through with a divorce.

Can I withdraw the divorce complaint by myself?

If a couple decides to change their mind after filing for a divorce, they can withdraw the complaint before a judgment is issued. However, one spouse alone can't prevent the divorce if the other spouse wants it to go forward. Either spouse alone can unilaterally file for divorce. It takes both spouses to decide to stay together but only one spouse to decide to get a divorce.

Changing Your Mind About a Divorce

There may be a number of reasons why one or both spouses want to reconsider a divorce. Over time, wounds heal and people change. What seemed like an insurmountable hurdle 6 months ago may be less serious now. Divorce can mark a major life change, especially for couples who have been married for decades. However, couples should also understand that it is okay to change your mind after deciding to get a divorce.

North Carolina does not make it easy to get a divorce on a whim. There are time and residency requirements in order for a couple to get a divorce in North Carolina. First, either spouse must have resided in the state for a period of 6 months or more to file for a divorce. The couple also has to have been living separately for at least 1 year with the intent to remain permanently separated. This means a couple has to live apart for at least a year before they can even begin divorce proceedings.

Over the course of a year apart, the spouses have a lot of time to think things over. It can also act as a sort of “test run,” to see what life will be like after a divorce. It is totally normal for people to reconsider their decisions, especially when they have gotten so used to a life connected to another person. This can be even more difficult to deal with when children are involved.

Even the divorce process itself can take a lot of time. After filing a complaint for a divorce, the spouses have time to consider their decision and back out before the judgment is issued. From the time the complaint is filed, it will generally take more than a month before a hearing can be held to finalize the divorce.

During the time between filing for divorce and issuing a judgment, the couples will generally have their final opportunity to change their minds and withdraw the complaint. Once the paperwork is filed and a court date is put on the calendar, it can make the reality of a divorce much more real. If you have any questions about whether you want to go through with a divorce after having second thoughts, talk to your North Carolina divorce lawyer about your options.

Jerkins Family Law

If you are considering changing your mind about getting a divorce, Jerkins Family Law can help. Located in Raleigh, North Carolina, Jerkins Family Law is committed to helping our clients in their time of need. Visit our dedicated divorce page to see how we can help you through this difficult time. Jerkins Family Law can help you with all your family law needs. Contact us today and see how we can help.

About the Author

Jonathan Jerkins

Jonathan "Jay" Jerkins, a native of Raleigh, North Carolina, intentionally focuses his practice on all aspects of North Carolina family law litigation and negotiations. Jay was admitted to the practice of law in North Carolina in 2014.


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