Absolute/Uncontested Divorce

There are two kinds of divorces – contested and uncontested. A contested divorce is one in which the parties cannot agree, either about getting divorced or about the terms of the divorce, such as the division of assets, allocation of debts, alimony, child support, or the custody of children.

In an uncontested divorce, the spouses agree on everything and do not need the court to divide assets or make determinations about spousal or child support or custody. In general, an uncontested divorce will proceed through the system more quickly, be much less complicated, and less of a financial burden.

North Carolina law requires:

  • That the parties requesting a divorce have lived separate and apart for one year AND
  • That the Husband and/or Wife have lived in the State of North Carolina for at least six months.

North Carolina Fees:

  • The filing fee for an absolute divorce is $225.00.
  • The filing fee for a notice of hearing for judgment is $20.00.
  • The filing fee for a name change is $10.00.


  • One year and a day after separation, the plaintiff may file a verified complaint for absolute divorce with the Courts.
  • The complaint must be served on the defendant.
  • The defendant has 30 days, from the time of service, to answer the complaint
  • On the 31st day after the defendant has been served, the plaintiff can file notice for intent to request judgment.
  • 10 days later a motion for judgment may be made.
  • If the motion is before the Clerk, the judgment will be signed in a few days. If the motion is before a Judge, the judgment will be signed at a scheduled hearing.

Shortening the Timeline:

If the defendant waives the right to answer the compliant, notice, and service, than the plaintiff does not have to wait 40 days to file the motion for judgment, but the parties must still live separate and apart for one year.