Divorce After a Health Scare or Illness

Posted by Josh Valentine | Oct 24, 2019

Divorce can be a time for major upheaval in your life. A divorce can result in changes to your living situation, support system, time with your children, and financial status. However, major life changes can also be the catalyst for deciding to get separated or divorced. Major life events, like suffering a terminal illness, recovering from cancer, or surviving a heart attack can cause individuals to make serious changes in their personal life, including seeking a divorce. 

Pivotal Life Events and Divorce

According to an article in Psychology Today, certain pivotal events that involve life-changing decisions can cause people to question themselves and reflect on their life. A pivotal event could lead to making the decision to get a divorce, such as suffering a serious health scare. One spouse may look at their life after a major change and decide they do not want to be in the relationship any longer. 

Recovering from Illness and Seeking a Divorce  

Many people who recover from a serious illness, such as cancer, feel like they are given a second lease on life. If the individual felt like they were in a loveless marriage or did not feel confident enough to leave the marriage, recovery may be the motivation that spouse needs to file for divorce. 

Alternatively, the non-ill spouse may struggle with their spouse's illness. The sick spouse's reaction toward how the other spouse treated them in their moment of need may be enough to make that spouse decide that they are not married to someone who would be able to care for them in the future. 

Illness can be stressful for both spouses, where each spouse feels the financial pressure of a serious medical issue, the stress of dealing with doctors and treatments, and being taken away from the normalness of day-to-day life. Stress and financial pressures are common reasons that can lead to divorce. 

Take Time to Make a Decision 

Some may recommend not making major life decisions shortly after a pivotal life event. However, in North Carolina, one of the requirements for filing for divorce is that the couple has to live separately for at least one year. Living apart for one year should be enough to give that individual time to consider their decision and make sure that separation is the right choice. 

Talk to Your North Carolina Divorce Lawyers

Medical conditions can lead to financial and emotional stress in a marriage. Recovering from a serious health condition may also motivate a spouse to make serious life changes, including filing for divorce. If you have any questions about filing for divorce, child custody, and alimony in North Carolina, contact your family law attorneys. At Caulder & Valentine Law Firm, PLLC, we have helped individuals deal with complex divorce proceedings to find the best solution for them and their children. Contact us today for a consultation.

About the Author

Josh Valentine

You could say Josh has a God-given ability for sustaining long-term relationships. He and his wife first met in elementary school and went to Gardner Webb University (GWU) together, where they tied for number 1 in their class. Then, they both started law school on the same day of their graduation and got married during their first semester. He has also known his law partner Blake Caulder since Kindergarten. Theirs is the perfect partnership. “He’s the brake; I am the accelerator,” Josh says. Both Josh and his wife attended an innovative program at Charlotte Law School that allowed them to complete law school in two years instead of the typical three. His wife graduated and passed the North Carolina bar at age 20, becoming one of the youngest attorneys in the state. He readily admits she’s smarter than him. Of course, Josh went on to pass the North Carolina State Bar himself and later the South Carolina State Bar. While in school, he was Associate Editor of the Law Review and received accolades like Phi Delta Phi International Legal Honor Society membership, Order of the Crown, Pro Bono Honors, CALI Awards (highest grade). In his career as a lawyer, he has been admitted to the United States Federal Court for the Western District of North Carolina, is a member of the American Association of Premier DUI Attorneys, and completed training for DWI Detection & Standardized Field Sobriety Testing. Josh has also been named to the Top 40 Under 40 for Criminal Defense by The National Trial Lawyers, the Business North Carolina 2019 Legal Elite for Criminal Defense, and the 10 Best Attorneys for Client Satisfaction by the American Institute of Criminal Law Attorneys three years in a row (2016, 2017, and 2018). Community involvement has been important to Josh all his life. In high school, he participated in building a Holocaust museum that has become internationally regarded. He and his wife are actively engaged in animal rescue, which currently means seven cats and two kittens. He served in prison ministry and assisted with fundraiser banquets there, and he provides pro bono and reduced fee legal services to those in need. As if all of that weren’t enough, Josh also mentors high risk youth and helps with his church’s youth group. He participates in other community volunteer projects involving construction, remodeling, drywall, painting, and landscaping. He’s an active student of the Bible and has traveled to Israel, Brazil, and Europe for mission work. No one can say Josh isn’t a well-rounded individual. In his spare time, he likes to play softball, basketball, and tennis, and he can play the piano and trombone. Sometimes on weekends, believe it or not, he enjoys pouring and finishing concrete with friends who own a concrete and grading business. In his law practice, Josh has made it a point to develop positive relationships with officers, clerks, and district attorneys, which has proven invaluable in delivering positive results for his clients. It’s important to him to both listen to his clients and fight for them. Law enforcement officers have important responsibilities to keep our communities safe and uphold the law, but one of the responsibilities of attorneys is to make sure officers do their job correctly. Josh considers it his job to hold them accountable for their actions. Josh is a person of deep faith. He knows that the established order of our universe and strength of America’s Judeo-Christian influenced court system is built on God’s word. His passion to serve each client with innovation, excellence and integrity is a byproduct of his faith. When asked why he became a lawyer, Josh says, “All through my life, I have personally witnessed family members and very close friends endure divorce, child custody battles, bankruptcy, civil lawsuits, and even fraudulent criminal accusations. I both saw and experienced the stress such events can place on an individual, and I realized that everyone, at some point in their life, needs hope, comfort, and encouragement. In each one of those situations, the person who was best situated to provide that vital support was their lawyer. So that’s why I became an attorney. I understand what you are going through, and I’m here to help you. Our office is focused on meeting your needs and guiding you through what may be the most difficult time of your life.” Education: Charlotte School of Law J.D., Magna Cum Laude Class Rank – 21 of 328 Associate Editor of Charlotte School of Law Law Review Certification and Concentration in Employment Law Phi Delta Phi International Legal Honor Society Order of the Crown Pro Bono Honors CALI Awards (Highest Grade)—Lawyering Process I and Contracts I Full Scholarship Gardner-Webb University B.S. in Accounting, Summa Cum Laude Distinguished Senior Student Award – Highest GPA Alpha Sigma Lambda National Honorary Society Bar Admissions: North Carolina State Bar