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Why am I having an equitable distribution hearing?

Goldsboro, NC |

My ex husband filed for divorce in NC, the divorce was granted. I did not retain council because I did not object to it. I received a letter for this hearing and I don't know why. We have nothing to distribute. When we separated he took everything in the household and refused to give me anything. I did have a vehicle that was in his name, but I told him numerous times to come get it. I later found out it was up for repossession, so I had the bank come and get it because my ex refused to answer me as to what he wanted me to do with it. I plan on attending this hearing, but we live in separate states. I had emailed his attorney and asked what it is he is saying we need to distribute. His attorney has refused to answer and said that he cant tell me it is conflict of interest.

Attorney Answers 3


  1. It would really be best to consult with an attorney to help you with any of the following: a) ascertain if the notice and hearing is legit (which it probably is, but with rare bad seeds out there you just never know!), b) review a copy of the original divorce complaint and judgment which would most definitely explain whether Equitable Distribution (ED) was part of the case or not, or if your ex is in fact trying to raise ED AFTER divorce which he actually CAN'T do under NC law, c) find out what the hearing is actually for (often times someone receives a notice and they think it's for a hearing or a trial, and it's for something more initial and practical such as a "pretrial conference", d) possibly save you a trip from coming all the way over here (not sure what state you moved to especially since your post says Goldsboro? but you say you are in separate states now and he filed in NC. During the consult the attorney would likely give you representation quotes for several options, one of them being to make a limited appearance FOR you at this court date (depending on what type of hearing it is of course). And since you are out of state, many of us have virtual offices where you can consult from afar so even that would not be a problem.
    Hope that helps and you get to the bottom of this. And be mindful of your dates whomever you choose since I'm sure the court date is coming up.

    The responses contained herein do not form an attorney-client relationship, nor are they intended to be anything other than the educated opinions of the author. The responses may or may not apply to you and should not be relied upon as ACTUAL legal advice. Rather, what is being provided here is legal information that would be best followed through on with a consult with an attorney after learning more about your specific facts, needs, legal issues, and goals.


  2. It is interesting that you received a notice for some sort of hearing without having received any preceding documents such as an equitable distribution affidavit filed by the ex. I would contact an attorney immediately, take any papers you have regarding this matter and let him/her review the file to see what is going on in your case. Unfortunately, there are some cases where the marital estate has a negative value; i.e., there is only debt to distribute. If he left with $60,000 in marital debt and you are responsible for only $20,000, he may be asking for contribution from you to assist with the marital debt, a sad situation, but one which comes up frequently.

    DISCLAIMER – Responding to inquiries on this site does not create an attorney client relationship between the responder and the inquirer, nor does it invoke any privilege on the part of the inquirer. The inquirer should recognize the limitations of the answers based on limited facts and is advised to seek legal counsel for more complete information and possible representation.


  3. I agree with Mr. Whittaker and Ms. Morelos. Lawyer up now. Another possibility is that he wants to hold you responsible for the car: "she wouldn't let me get the car" or "she told me she was paying and now my credit is shot because she let it get repossessed out of spite." Don't go into this blind.

    And yes, his attorney will not answer your questions...don't waste your time with that avenue.

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