The divorce process is a stressful time for individuals seeking to go their separate ways. Whether contentious or amicable, a divorce will require that you go through your debts, assets, and personal belongings with a fine-toothed comb. The ordeal is a headache at the very least and a nightmare at the worst. In addition to separating assets, you may also need to come to an agreement about custody arrangements for minor children. Needless to say, emotions can spike, even in uncontested North Carolina divorces.
If you're going through a divorce, you aren't alone. Nearly 1,000 divorces occur in Gaston County each year. Nationally, nearly half of those who marry will end up divorcing. Despite the sheer number of divorces, each divorce is unique to the situation. For example, some couples who decide to move on with separate lives were brought to their marriage by arrangement.
Divorcing After an Arranged Marriage
The modern arranged marriage is more than meeting your soon-to-be spouse on your wedding day, sight unseen. Today, there is often a negotiation between matched couples. Notably, this negotiation is not just between the two who will marry, but also between their families.
Since arranged marriages are often a component of a couple's cultural identity, it can be tricky to navigate the divorce process. In addition to the common complications of a traditional divorce, those divorcing after an arranged marriage often face additional stigma and may be subject to the terms of a dowry.
The dowry may be given from the groom's family, or the bride's, in consideration of the marriage. The dowry is often a component of a marriage contract, and courts across the nation remain inconsistent in how to handle dowries upon divorce. For example, in an Ohio case, the court held that the husband did not owe the wife the agreed-upon $25,000 dowry provided for in their marriage contract because the agreement did not comport with the state's standard. Notably, the individuals in the Ohio case married outside of the U.S., highlighting the variety of issues that may come into play when divorces arise after an arranged marriage.
Ultimately, several factors may impact one spouse's ability to recoup an agreed-upon dowry from the other spouse when they divorce from their arranged marriage. A court may consider whether the marriage contract adheres to the norms of the state, or the court may take into consideration whether or not the dowry disproportionately transfers the marital assets to only one spouse.
Divorce Attorneys in Gastonia, North Carolina
If you're planning to divorce after an arranged marriage, you should contact an experienced Gastonia divorce attorney. A competent and compassionate divorce attorney will help guide you through a difficult process. The attorneys at Caulder & Valentine Law Firm, PLLC in Gastonia, understand each legal separation is unique and requires a carefully tailored approach. For a consultation, call 704-470-2440, or contact us online today.