Divorce Lawyer ⋅ Summerville, SC

Need a Divorce Attorney in Summerville, South Carolina?

If you are facing the prospect of separation or divorce in Summerville, SC you probably have questions.

Questions like…

  • How do I file for divorce?
  • How will the court decide child custody?
  • Can I get alimony if my spouse was my primary source of income?
  • Will I have to pay alimony to my former spouse?

The uncertainty of divorce, especially when there are children involved, can be overwhelming and is among the most painful experiences that many people will go through in their lives.

Your Summerville, SC divorce lawyer understands what you are going through, and we are here to answer your questions, handle the legal aspects of your divorce in court, and fight to protect your financial interests and your children at every stage of the process.

Whether your case calls for skillful negotiations or scorched-earth warfare, your Summerville, SC divorce lawyer’s job is to walk through the fire with you.

We will be with you every step of the way – answering your questions, negotiating on your behalf, and helping you to prepare for hearings or trial.

The divorce lawyers at the Seaton & Duncan

care about you, your family, and your case.


When you call our office, we will:

  • Schedule an appointment to meet with you, answer your questions, and help you to decide whether we are the right Summerville divorce lawyers for you and your case,
  • Help you to determine your next steps to accomplish your goals, whether that is filing for divorce, seeking marital counseling, separating from your spouse before filing for divorce, or asking the court for an Order of separate support and maintenance,
  • Determine the types of evidence and testimony you will need to prove your claims in court,
  • Help you to retain a private investigator or other expert witnesses as needed,
  • Negotiate with your former spouse, or their attorney, to reach a settlement agreement when possible, and
  • Represent your interests at mediation, motion hearings, and your final divorce hearing.


The Summerville, SC divorce lawyers at the Seaton & Duncan have the experience you need to handle your divorce proceedings and protect your interests. Our job is to “win your case,” which, depending on the circumstances, could mean achieving your divorce with the least amount of drama and conflict, or it could mean going to war to protect your financial interests or your children.

Worry Free

They are very good at what they do! Go see them today and be worry free!

– Kipp Cavadias

Great Lawyer

Great Lawyer, will definitely use again when needed. Thank You Beau!

– Charles McGee

Wonderful Lawyer

He truly cares about his clients!! A wonderful lawyer!!

– Lamarr Richardson

* The Rules of Professional Conduct require disclosure that this is a “Testimonial” about the attorney. Please be aware that any result achieved on behalf of one client in one matter does not necessarily indicate similar results can be obtained for other clients.

Learn more about divorce laws
in Summerville, South Carolina:

How to File for Divorce in Summerville, SC

Divorce proceedings begin with the filing of a Complaint, which states your grounds for divorce and any additional relief that you are requesting from the court which may include:

  • A divorce from your former spouse,
  • Alimony,
  • Child support,
  • Child custody,
  • Child visitation rights,
  • Property division, and
  • Any other relief that you are entitled to under South Carolina law.

Once filed, the Summons and Complaint must be served on the defendant, and they will have 30 days to file an Answer that includes all defenses and counterclaims.

How is Child Custody Determined in South Carolina?

Child custody is often determined as part of divorce proceedings, and the family court will determine child custody based on SC law and the statutory factors that must be considered.

Although most divorces decide child custody by agreement before the final divorce hearing, the family court must still consider the statutory factors and approve the parties’ agreement.

South Carolina Code § 63-15-230 says that the family court must “make the final custody determination in the best interest of the child based upon the evidence presented.”

South Carolina Code § 63-15-240(B) contains a list of factors that the court must consider when deciding the best interest of the child.

Grounds for Divorce in South Carolina

There are five possible grounds for divorce in SC, one or more of which must be proven before the court will approve your divorce.

By far the most common ground for divorce in South Carolina is one-year’s continuous separation, or a “no-fault” divorce.

Other grounds for divorce in SC include:

  • Adultery,
  • Physical cruelty,
  • Habitual drunkenness, and
  • Abandonment.

What Other Issues Must be Decided in the Divorce Action?

When a couple files for divorce in Summerville, SC, the court must also decide other issues related to the couple’s children and finances, which may include:

  • Child custody,
  • Child support,
  • Child visitation,
  • Alimony, and
  • Equitable division of marital property.

These issues may be temporarily decided in a marital agreement or at a temporary hearing early in the divorce case.

If the issues are not decided through negotiation and agreement, the parties may be required to attend mandatory mediation before the final hearing, and, if the issues are not decided before the final hearing, the family court will decide the issues in a bench trial.

The divorce lawyers at the Seaton & Duncan have years of experience successfully representing divorce clients in Summerville, SC and the surrounding area, including:


  • Simple divorces based on one-year’s continuous separation,
  • Complex divorces involving substantial assets and family businesses,
  • Litigating child custody, child support, property division, and alimony matters in the family court,
  • Negotiating separation agreements on behalf of our clients,
  • Representing our clients in mediation, and
  • Litigating divorce cases in the family court when necessary to protect our clients’ interests.

When you choose our Summerville, South Carolina divorce firm to handle your case, you will receive personal attention directly from your divorce attorney.

We make communication with our clients a priority, will answer your questions, and will keep you up to date on what is happening in your case throughout the process.

Ready To Speak With An Attorney?

Let’s discuss the details of your case and see if we can help.

Common Questions About


The cost of divorce lawyers in South Carolina varies based on the lawyer’s experience, hourly rate, and the circumstances of the case.

For example, a simple divorce based on one-year’s continuous separation with no contested issues will cost significantly less than a contested divorce based on fault grounds where the parties do not agree on child custody or the division of the marital assets.



When there are substantial assets at stake, issues like child custody or property division have not been agreed upon, there are family businesses that must be dissolved, sold, or divided, or there are other issues that require litigation to resolve, you have what we call a “complex” divorce.


A “simple divorce” is when there are no fault-based grounds for divorce and there are no contested issues.

Even a “no-fault” divorce based on one-year’s continuous separation is not a “simple” or “uncontested” divorce if all issues have not been agreed upon, including child custody, child support, alimony, and the division of marital property.


One-year’s continuous separation means exactly what it says. You must be separated – living in separate residences without romantic involvement – for at least one year. That year must be continuous – if you reconcile, even briefly, the clock starts over again.

When you appear in court for your final hearing, you will need to present an independent witness who can confirm that you have been separated for the required continuous year.


If you cannot locate your spouse to serve them with the divorce papers, we will attempt to locate them and serve them using an investigator or professional process server. If they still cannot be located, you may be able to “serve” them with notice of the Complaint through publication in a newspaper at their last known location.
Consult with your attorney before attempting service by publication, because failure to serve a necessary party can result in your case being “undone” in a later proceeding.