Law Services


Contested and uncontested divorces; “absolute divorce,” and divorce from bed and board.

In North Carolina, a divorce may be obtained only after the husband and wife have lived separate and apart for one year.

  • Contested and Uncontested

Child Custody and Visitation

Temporary child custody, emergency child custody, custody relocations, custody modification, grandparent visitation.

In North Carolina, an order for child custody is based on what is in the best interest of the child.

Child Support

Establishment of child support, temporary and permanent child support, modification of child support, contempt for non-payment of child support, and enforcement mechanisms like civil contempt.

Property Division / Equitable Distribution

Division of marital assets and debts, otherwise known in North Carolina as equitable distribution.

In North Carolina, there is a presumption that an equal (50/50) division of the marital estate is fair and equitable.

Spousal Support Alimony

From temporary spousal support (post-separation support) to permanent alimony as well as modification and enforcement.

To receive alimony in North Carolina, you must be a “dependent spouse”, your spouse must be a “supporting spouse”, and an award of alimony must be equitable based on a variety of factors.

Marital Agreements

Prenuptial Agreements (prenups), premarital agreements, and antenuptial agreements.

Interim separation agreements, partial settlement agreements, post-nuptial agreements, and comprehensive property settlement agreements.

  • Address Premarital Agreements, Postnuptial Agreements, Separation and Property Settlement Agreements


Family law matters that need judicial intervention — when a judge has to decide. While an agreement or consent order is always the ideal and desired outcome, it is sometimes necessary to use the court system to achieve a desired result.


Mediation is a voluntary process designed to facilitate a mutually beneficial settlement between the parties. To be successful in mediation, both parties must be willing to compromise. Mediation is not always necessary, but it is sometimes required in family law litigation. In North Carolina, mediation must take place before the parties can attend a permanent child custody hearing or an equitable distribution trial. But mediation can take place even when there is not litigation if the parties believe it will facilitate a settlement. When the parties agree to participate in mediation, they choose a neutral, third-party attorney (who is experienced in family law mediation) to act as the mediator. On the day of mediation, the parties and their attorneys occupy separate conference rooms while the mediator shuttles back and forth between the rooms, sharing offers and counteroffers and guiding the parties closer to a place of compromise. A mediator cannot force the parties to agree, and if the parties are unable to reach a compromise, then the mediator (or the parties) will either end the mediation or will suggest a date to reconvene.

Collaborative Divorce in Winston Salem

Collaborative divorce in Winston Salem, North Carolina is a private and confidential process that enables spouses to resolve disputes outside of court through solution-oriented, interest-based settlement negotiations.

If you would like to learn more about collaborative divorce in North Carolina, reach out to family law attorney Bennett D. Rainey or contact a Winston-Salem collaborative divorce lawyer online today.

Domestic Violence

Domestic violence occurs when one person commits one of the following acts on someone with whom they are or have been in a personal relationship: causing bodily injury or attempting to cause bodily injury, placing the victim or a member of their family in fear of imminent serious bodily injury or continued harassment that inflicts substantial emotional distress, or sexually assaults the victim. A victim of domestic violence may file for a restraining order against the abuser. Under Chapter 50B of the North Carolina General Statutes, if a court finds that an act of domestic violence has occurred, the court is required to grant a protective order restraining the abuser from further acts of domestic violence.


Adopting a child can be one of the most compassionate acts a person can do for a child. Family law attorney Bennett D. Rainey believes that all adoptions are centered on the love one has for a child who needs a family. While adopting a child in need is certainly an act of genuine love, the legal adoption process can be overwhelming and challenging.

Consult with an adoption lawyer in Winston Salem, North Carolina, to find out more about the adoption process whether it be a private adoption, step-parent adoption, or adult adoptions.

  • Address stepparent adoptions, grandparent adoptions, adult adoptions, contested adoptions, father’s rights in adoptions, interstate adoptions, and name changes
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