Family Law

Family Law

If you need an experienced Charlotte family law attorney, our firm is ready to assist you and step into the fight for you.

Experiencing marital trouble, contemplating separation, and going through a possible divorce is extremely stressful and emotional. This is a significant life-changing event that has far-reaching impact beyond the spouses involved. The attorneys at our firm recognize this and strive to listen well, and to provide sound, reasoned advice and guidance to our clients.

When a situation must be handled through the court system, we have over two decades of trial experience with family law cases in Charlotte and neighboring counties, and we have built up a reputation with opposing attorneys and the Judges. We do not hesitate to zealously advocating for our clients throughout the litigation process (including mediations, surveillance by private investigators, expert witnesses, depositions, arbitrations and trials).

If, however, the spouses can be reasonable, it is preferable for them to try to resolve their dispute prior to a Court hearing or trial. In those situations, we work diligently with our clients and opposing counsel and mediators to achieve a good and fair result. The major areas in family and domestic law in North Carolina are as follows:

Alienation of Affections and Criminal Conversation

If a spouse has been unfaithful, the other spouse can file a lawsuit against the cheating spouse’s boyfriend or girlfriend. North Carolina is one of only a few states that allow these types of lawsuits. This type of lawsuit includes claims for alienation of affections, and criminal conversations, punitive damages, and may include claims for infliction of emotional distress.

Alimony (and Post Separation Support)

When spouses separate, one of the spouses may need financial support from the other spouse. In North Carolina, we call this post separation support (temporary alimony) for the short term, and then alimony for a longer duration. Whether a client is entitled to such financial support depends on many factors under North Carolina law, and in large part depends on their standard of living and their respective incomes and monthly needs/expenses.

Child Custody and Child Support

When spouses separate, one of the most stressful issues they face involves what will happen to the children, who will care for them, where they will live (the parenting schedule), and how to support them (normally calculated by the North Carolina Child Support Guidelines). Our attorneys believe that the best people to decide these issues are the parents. If the parents (with the attorney’s guidance) can resolve these child custody and child support issues, normally that will be easier on everyone and most importantly on the children.


In North Carolina, divorce typically happens apart from the resolution of all of the other marital issues. In North Carolina, when spouses separate, there are two conditions that must be met before they can get a divorce. First, at least one of the spouses must have lived in North Carolina for at least six consecutive months. Second, the spouses must have lived physically separated and apart from each other in separate residences for at least one year without resuming the marital relationship. Often, divorces are relatively simple. However, there are occasions where a complication arises, including a dispute over the date of separation, a question of jurisdiction, when one of the spouses cannot be located, and/or when one of the spouses lives in a foreign country.

Domestic Violence

When relationships break down, a situation may arise where one is threatening or actually being abusive to the other person. If someone is a victim of domestic violence, the Court can enter a restraining order that can last up to one year or more that can lead to a person being removed from the home, and that can impact the parent’s ability to parent his children.

Equitable Distribution

When spouses separate, they have property and debts that need to be split up. In North Carolina, we call this equitable distribution. Typically, a spouse is entitled to keep his or her separate property, but the marital property and debts from the marriage are divided between the parties. Sometimes, the distribution of marital assets and debts can be a relatively simple process involving a Separation Agreement. Other times, there may be a need to value a marital home, a spouse’s business or a retirement or pension plan.

We represent both men and women, and a sample of the different family law cases we handle in Charlotte and the surrounding areas include:

  • Adoptions
  • Alienation of Affections/Criminal Conversation
  • Alimony
  • Appeals
  • Child Custody
  • Child Support
  • Contempt
  • Divorce
  • Domestic Violence
  • Equitable Distribution
  • Modification of alimony, custody and/or child support
  • Post Separation Support
  • Marital Agreements (Premarital or Prenuptial agreements, Postnuptial agreements and Separation Agreements)
  • Registration and enforcement of out-of-state orders
  • Qualified Domestic Relations Orders (QDRO)
  • Termination of Parental Rights (TPR)

For a family law case, you need a determined and experienced Charlotte family law attorney, so let the lawyers of Thurman, Wilson, Boutwell & Galvin P.A. help. Call us today at (704) 377-4164 or submit our online form.

Client Reviews

What a great professional experience I have had working with Mr. Galvin! His straight-forward, honest approach has helped me both personally and professionally in many ways. He is always there when I need him.

Jason Jones

I recently engaged the legal services of James Galvin, Esq., to assist me in a foreclosure case brought by a bank. He skillfully and thoughtfully negotiated a very successful conclusion with a nominal cash settlement of an otherwise considerable debt. I can thoroughly recommend the use of his...


James Galvin is the most honest and forthright attorney I ever met. He has been a pleasure to work with. If I ever need an attorney again, James will be my choice. I know he will work hard on your behalf to help resolve the matter to your best interest.

David L. Lively

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