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North Carolina considering the Healthy Marriage Act

When the end of a marriage approaches, generally both spouses in Ballantyne want to get the legal proceedings over with so that they can continue forward in their lives. The divorce process however, can sometimes be a lengthy one, especially if there are disagreements over which parent the children should live with, how much should be paid in terms of support and dividing up the bank accounts and financial assets.

A proposed bill in the North Carolina legislature, if passed, will apparently slow down the process of getting divorced even more. Known as the Healthy Marriage Act, the bill is attracting a lot of criticism because couples will have to wait two years before they can get a divorce. During that time, couples would be required to go through a counseling process, although it was not made clear what that counseling would include and concern was voiced that not every couple may be able to afford it.

Those against the law point out how the courts are likely to get bogged down with multiple court cases related to domestic assault. It is unknown whether there is a provision in the bill to address people in abusive relationships and give them a different option. Apparently the bill came from the revelation that North Carolina has more divorces than many other states.

It seems that while the intent of the bill may be to encourage couples to make it work rather than just quit, it could force people who feel a spouse has betrayed them through infidelity or financial fraud, to be re-victimized all over again. Lawmakers may want to carefully examine the contents and effects this bill would create before casting their vote.

Source: 6 WECT, "Proposed bill would delay divorce process by 2 years in NC," Gavin Johnson, April 3, 2013

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