Divorce Attorney in Bluffton SC

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If there were one universal truth it would be that every family is different. We all have our own set of challenges to face and changes to go through. Sometimes those changes are happy like when a new baby is born. Other times these changes involve uncertainty and loss like in the event of a divorce.

If you are having to go through the pain of divorce deal with a complicated custody issue or are handling a different family-related legal matter you might need help. At CHSA Law LLC we understand that family issues are hard. Many of the family law clients that we work for have big questions about the future leaving them over-stressed and full of worry. They are concerned about their children their marriage or both. They are wrestling with uncertainty and anxiety having been served confusing documents that don't make sense. Sound familiar? A family law attorney in Bluffton, SC can help whether you need a level-headed moderator or a trusted advocate in the courtroom.

At CHSA Law LLC we have decades of combined experience serving the needs of families from divorce proceedings to family formation issues. Our team is fiercely committed to our clients and with a dedicated focus stays up-to-date on the nuanced world of family law in Bluffton. If you're looking for personal attention unbiased representation and a responsive family law attorney look no further than our law firm.

Divorce Attorney Bluffton, SC

If you're unsure of whether you need a family law lawyers in Bluffton" ask yourself these questions:

  • Are you getting married?
  • Are you thinking about divorce?
  • Has your spouse served you with legal papers?
  • Are your kids not receiving the support that they are entitled to?

If you answered yes to any of the questions above know that we are here to help you figure out your next steps. With CDH Law Firm by your side you can have the confidence to face even the most difficult family law issues. All of our attorneys have years of experience are incredibly responsive and fight for your family's rights. We are happy to take as much time as you need to answer questions and help put your mind at ease for whatever lies ahead.

 Law Firm Bluffton, SC

Our firm specializes in a wide range of family law cases including:

  • Divorce
  • Child Custody
  • Alimony
  • Adoptions
  • Child Support
  • Mediation
  • Property Division
  • More

If you have been left to manage a foreign family law situation it's time to call CHSA Law LLC. We will sit down with you for an hour at absolutely no cost - because we understand what you're going through and know that you need answers not another bill to pay.

To help provide you with a basic understanding of family law keep reading for in-depth explanations on our areas of expertise.

The-Cobb-Dill-Hammett-Difference

Divorce lawyer in
Bluffton SC.

At CHSA Law LLC we know all-too-well that a one size fits all approach isn't going to work very well for your unique situation. That's why we approach each divorce case from a personalized standpoint - something that we feel like each of our clients deserves.

 Attorney Bluffton, SC
Our goal is to help solve your family law issues and focus on your needs when your divorce is finalized. We will help develop a strategy for:
  • Meeting your post-divorce needs and objectives
  • Dividing marital property for maximum benefit
  • Maximizing time spent with your child as part of your divorce's parenting plan
  • Strengthen your role as a decision-maker for your child
  • Navigating your divorce proceedings and minimizing financial and emotional costs

By working together our divorce law firm will help you rebuild your life and secure a better future for your family.

Divorces in South Carolina
- Different Than Other States

Unlike divorce law in other states South Carolina divorce law doesn't allow spouses to receive an instant no-fault divorce. One or both spouses in the marriage must establish a legally acceptable reason for a divorce to happen. Grounds for a divorce in Bluffton, SC include:

  • Desertion
  • Physical Cruelty
  • Habitual Drunkenness
  • Separation for One Year or More
  • Adultery
 Divorce Lawyer Bluffton, SC

If you or your spouse do not have the necessary grounds for divorce in Bluffton our family law firm can file a Separate Maintenance and Support action. This step lets the court order child custody alimony and marital bills until you can file for your divorce. During this period CHSA Law LLC gathers pertinent info on your spouse's character and assets that can strengthen your case should it be necessary.

Common Issues Associated
with Divorces in Bluffton

A divorce in Bluffton means more than the end of a marriage. It involves dividing the parties debts and assets determines child support and custody parameters and can establish alimony. At CHSA Law LLC many of our clients are able to reach agreements with their spouse to resolve these issues. Reaching an agreement lets both parties customize the terms of their divorce to conserve resources avoid trial and meet the family's needs.

Sometimes however two spouses cannot or will not come to terms with an agreement. In these situations a trial is possible and litigation is necessary. Our family law attorneys in Bluffton, SC. are highly experienced litigators and are well-equipped to handle any disputes revealed in the conference or courtroom.

Common divorce issues include:

Divorce Attorney Bluffton, SC
1.

Child Custody and Visitation

One of the most heart-wrenching difficult decisions for parents going through a divorce is resolving child custody and visitation issues. Child custody refers to how much time each parent will spend with their child and whether they can make decisions for them. According to South Carolina law child custody and visitation time are based on what is best for the child.

 Law Firm Bluffton, SC
2.

Child Support

Like other U.S states a formula is used in South Carolina to determine how much child support a person must pay. This formula recommends the amount of child support based on factors like how much income the parents make the cost of childcare and the obligation to support children from other relationships.

 Attorney Bluffton, SC
3.

Alimony

In South Carolina there is no formula to determine how much alimony a person must pay. However courts consider several factors when deciding if alimony is needed how much alimony should be paid and how long a spouse must pay it. Those factors include each spouse's ability and need to pay alimony how long the marriage lasted and any marital misconduct that occurred. To make matters more confusing there are different alimony types including lump sum rehabilitative and reimbursement.

 Divorce Lawyer Bluffton, SC
4.

Distribution of Property

In South Carolina marital property is the property that each spouse amasses from the date of the wedding to the time a spouse files for divorce. That property can often include marital debt. In a South Carolina divorce the courts will order an equitable division of property meaning fair under all circumstances but not necessarily equal.

Divorce Attorney Bluffton, SC

Understanding Child Custody in Bluffton, SC.

As mentioned above decisions that involve child custody and visitation can be contentious for parents both emotionally and legally. As experienced empathetic divorce lawyers we understand how difficult this process can be. When we work with clients going through child custody battles we always make it a point to be with them through the ups and downs to help them stay centered. Whether you are the husband or wife in your divorce we share a common goal: finding an effective way to support your children and assure their wellbeing.

In South Carolina child custody is a loaded term. In the most general definition child custody determines when each parent is responsible for the physical care of the child and how much authority each parent has to make decisions in their child's life.

No two child custody cases are the same but a negotiated custody arrangement is usually preferred in the judge's eyes as each parent has input in the process. If the parents cannot come to an amicable resolution their fate is left in the hands of a Family Court Judge in South Carolina. The focus of child custody law is always on what is in the best interests of the child. What the judge determines to be the best interests changes depending on the judge.

There are different variations of custody in South Carolina (or custody arrangements) each with varying degrees of authority. When you consult with our family law attorneys at CHSA Law LLC we will go over the child custody process in detail and touch on each distinction to eliminate any confusion you have.

  • Help develop cooperative solutions to disputes or mediate when needed
  • Create an equitable parenting plan
  • Discuss the implications of the different forms of joint and sole custody
  • Problems related to child support
  • Modify court orders if you or your child's circumstances change
  • Enforcement of visitation and custody agreements
  • Much more
Many of the family law clients that walk into our office have big questions that are leaving them full of stress and worry. <

Many of the family law clients that walk into our office have big questions that are leaving them full of stress and worry.

 Law Firm Bluffton, SC

Understanding Child Support
in Bluffton, SC.

When children are involved in divorce cases child support is often ordered. Several factors can impact whether child support is ordered like the income-earning potential of the child's parents any custody arrangements that are created and what needs the child may have.

At CHSA Law LLC we have years of experience with child support issues relating to:

  • Cases where child support is needed for stay-at-home parents
  • Modifications and enforcement of child support mandates
  • Resolving support and custody disputes
  • Mediation arrangements to reach an agreement on child support. Compared to litigation going
  • the mediated route often means less stress and is more cost-effective than trial.

When you trust our family law firm in Bluffton for representation we can help calculate an estimate of how much child support you or your spouse may be ordered to pay. We can also perform a needs-based analysis in cases that involve large amounts of income. At the end of the day our goal is to make this frustrating process as stress-free as possible for you so that you can focus on living life and caring for your child.

Understanding Alimony in
Bluffton, SC.

Alimony (sometimes called spousal support or maintenance) is ordered by the court or negotiated between parties. This kind of spousal support has many factors like the income of both spouses how long they were married and the age of each spouse. Like child custody and child support trusted legal guidance is strongly recommended if you are facing potential alimony payments. Our family law attorneys will help you reach amicable arrangements for fair and appropriate alimony payments.

At CHSA Law LLC your family law attorney in Bluffton, SC will help protect your interests and rights regarding:

 Attorney Bluffton, SC
  • Alimony and business assets
  • Permanent or long-term alimony
  • Significant alimony in high-asset divorces
  • Modifications to alimony arrangements when you or your spouse's circumstances change
  • Enforcement of spousal support mandates when needed

Understanding Division of
Property in Bluffton, SC.

When there are no children marital property or issues of alimony divorces often proceed smoothly between amicable spouses. However most divorces in South Carolina are much more complex. Typically divorce involves a union between spouses that lasts for years and involves substantial marital property. This property can be personal property real estate family businesses debts out-of-state property debts bank accounts and more.

In these nuanced situations the applicable parties need assistance dividing their property. This help most often comes from seasoned family law attorneys like CHSA Law LLC.

When it comes to distribution of property certain types of properties that are controversial even under the property division rules in South Carolina. South Carolina is an equitable distribution state meaning that marital property is divided equitably but not always equally.

If you are going through a divorce it's important that you are aware of the following assets and the common issues their division presents:

 Divorce Lawyer Bluffton, SC
Pensions

Pensions:

Generally pensions are the second-largest asset in a marriage. When there are sufficient alternative income sources to compensate the non-pension holder South Carolina divorce courts may leave the pension rights with the spouse who earned it with future distribution available. Otherwise a divorce court may enter a Qualified Domestic Relations Order requiring the pension administrator to pay both the former spouse and worker.

Family Home

Family Home:

The family home or the primary residential property owned by the divorcing couple is usually considered a marriage's biggest asset. Dividing this kind of property can be complex and frustrating especially when there are kids involved.

Many divorcing couples have a hard time reaching an agreement on property division. Because the division of property depends on the complexity of you or your spouse's assets and liabilities it is crucial to consult with an experienced family law attorney to provide guidance.

Latest News in Bluffton, SC

Neighbors concerned over contaminated tap water in Bluffton area

BLUFFTON, S.C. (WSAV) — Imagine getting a notice from your utility company saying your drinking water may be contaminated. This recently happened to people who live in several Bluffton neighborhoods.“You expect your water to be safe and drinkable. So it’s very disappointing,” said Joshua Hower, who moved to Okatie in 2021 with his wife. He said since moving to the Lowcountry, his skin has gotten significantly dryer.People who live south of Broad River in Beaufort County most likely got a letter from the ...

BLUFFTON, S.C. (WSAV) — Imagine getting a notice from your utility company saying your drinking water may be contaminated. This recently happened to people who live in several Bluffton neighborhoods.

“You expect your water to be safe and drinkable. So it’s very disappointing,” said Joshua Hower, who moved to Okatie in 2021 with his wife. He said since moving to the Lowcountry, his skin has gotten significantly dryer.

People who live south of Broad River in Beaufort County most likely got a letter from the Beaufort-Jasper Water and Sewage Authority.

It reads that during four quarterly water quality tests last year, the amount of disinfection byproducts violated a standard for safe drinking water.

“It’s definitely a little alarming, a little scary to think that I’ve been drinking this water for a year and a half, use it to wash my hands, take a shower, brush my teeth, and there could be long-term impacts to that.”

BJWSA said customers shouldn’t be worried. The letter reads that for it to cause cancer you’d have to drink this water over years. However, it doesn’t say exactly how long that would take.

“It’s only an issue if you’re exposed for X amount of time or you didn’t tell us what the total suspended solids were with the parts per million were you’re really just guesstimating how much I’ve been exposed to, how much tap water I drink based on the average amount of tap water,” Hower said. “Most people I think you’d find if you did a survey, most people say they don’t drink tap water, but they do. They just don’t realize they drink as much as they do. So your average is probably skewed. So the actual consumption rate, it’s probably much higher than you think. So your impact is much higher than you’re projecting, which is why these issues tend to snowball.”

The company said the reason the water was contaminated was because they used chlorine to change the color. Many people who live in the Bluffton area complain about brown or yellow-colored water.

“The water doesn’t need to look perfect. It needs to be safe,” Hower said. “And that should be the primary concern of providing water to the area.”

The company told WSAV that the water is safe to drink now.

“We mailed a public notice to customers located south of the Broad River, about quarterly testing results that indicated levels of haloacetic acids (HAA5) were higher than average regulatory limits,” a BJWSA spokesperson told WSAV in a statement. “This is not an emergency, we notified customers because they have the right to know details about the water they drink. Follow-up, supplemental tests show that HAA5 levels are back to normal with results between .052 and .031 mg/L, since October.”

The company also forwarded customers to a Q&A webpage.

They say the levels are back to normal and that the letter was not meant to alarm customers. However, even if it’s safe to drink people who live in the area are upset they didn’t get told earlier.

“It’s irresponsible to not give out this information as soon as you have it,” Hower said. “I know there’s a fine line between inciting panic in the local populace, and I really do understand that. I’m not trying to bind somebody up and say that I want to know the minute that you know that something’s not right. But within 30 days, we should have a notification.”

Kenny B’s Cajun restaurant getting ready for Mardi Gras in new Bluffton location

With Mardi Gras season officially under way in Louisiana, Kenny B’s French Quarter Cafe is gearing up for the holiday in its new Bluffton location.The restaurant that serves Cajun and Creole specialties for breakfast, lunch and dinner first opened on Hilton Head’s south end in 1999 and, last year, made the decision to move to a larger space just across the bridges.Its new home is in Bridge Center, along U.S...

With Mardi Gras season officially under way in Louisiana, Kenny B’s French Quarter Cafe is gearing up for the holiday in its new Bluffton location.

The restaurant that serves Cajun and Creole specialties for breakfast, lunch and dinner first opened on Hilton Head’s south end in 1999 and, last year, made the decision to move to a larger space just across the bridges.

Its new home is in Bridge Center, along U.S. 278 across from Moss Creek, and it quietly opened its doors to customers starting Dec. 27.

“I’ll be honest,” said chef and owner Ken Ballard, “it rejuvenated me doing this again. I had good memories from when we first started because that was a dream come true, you know, to finally get your own place.”

The building, once home to Thai Smile Cuisine, was extensively renovated over nearly a year to create a large waiting area for take-out orders and a spacious dining area with a combination of tables and booths and plenty of natural light.

There are reminders of the original location, with framed mementos and posters lining the walls. Ballard even had large canvases printed with photos of the iconic French Quarter mural that went from floor to ceiling at the Hilton Head restaurant.

The larger space also allowed for the creation of a vivid red “Dawghouse” room for fans of the University of Georgia bulldogs. Ballard’s own bulldog Beignet Bouchet (“BAYN-yay BOO-shay”), named for the Louisiana-style pastry fried and dusted with powdered sugar, is well represented among the photos.

All of Ballard’s employees moved to the new location, and he has also added additional staff.

While the space is new, customers can be reassured that the menu hasn’t changed.

Previously, all ordering was done on paper and customers were rung up on an old cash register. The new space now has a modern point-of-sale accounting system that allows pick-up orders to be placed online.

“I’ve had a good mix of my old customers from Hilton Head, a lot of them tourists that were here for the new year holidays came in. That that was the best sign of anything, that I know I will still get my summer people, as I call them,” Ballard said, “and then I’ve gotten a lot more people that live out here that would have never went down to Hilton Head.”

The lunch shift in particular has been busy with locals on their midday breaks from work.

Mardi Gras on Tuesday, Feb. 13, will be a customer appreciation day. Ballard hopes to have his license to serve beer and wine by then, but regardless, he plans lunch specials on po-boys, jambalaya, gumbo and muffalettas. Of course, there will be king cake; at Kenny B’s, those who find a plastic baby in their cake will get a prize.

On a recent day, two separate customers stopped to talk to compliment Ballard on the food and the space over the course of about 15 minutes.

“This is the best food ever,” said one woman who identified herself as from Ohio. “We have nothing like this.”

This story was originally published January 16, 2024, 9:12 AM.

New Italian restaurant coming to Old Town Bluffton. Here’s a look inside before it opens

One-year-old Joelle DeLeo sat in a stroller rattling a small plastic toy on a recent Thursday morning as activity buzzed around her. She was sitting in the middle of a soon-to-open restaurant that will bear her name in Bluffton.Joelle, the restaurant, is located at 132 Bluffton Road, Suite 100, in a newly constructed building that also is home to a salon, an architecture firm and other businesses. It’s the result of years of planning and work by two ge...

One-year-old Joelle DeLeo sat in a stroller rattling a small plastic toy on a recent Thursday morning as activity buzzed around her. She was sitting in the middle of a soon-to-open restaurant that will bear her name in Bluffton.

Joelle, the restaurant, is located at 132 Bluffton Road, Suite 100, in a newly constructed building that also is home to a salon, an architecture firm and other businesses. It’s the result of years of planning and work by two generations of the family, and, if all goes well with a liquor license and town permits, they will be serving patrons from a “modern Italian” menu later this spring.

Robert and Breana DeLeo, the toddler’s parents and the restaurant’s owner, met while working in the hospitality industry in Charleston, later moved to New York, and now live in Bluffton. Robert’s family owns Island Restaurant Equipment on Hilton Head. His father also is one of the partners in the development of the center where the restaurant is located, making it a true family business.

The DeLeos’ vision for the restaurant is light and airy but still cozy. Breana described it as “modern, but not too modern.”

“We’re trying to go very Italian coastal, very neutral tones,” she said.

That Italian coastal theme echoes in the food served there.

Chef Brandon Torre has worked at The Ritz-Carlton, The Omni Hotel, The Westin Hotel and, most recently, Colleton River Club in Bluffton. He is planning a menu that offers wood-fired pizza and Italian fare including fresh, house-made pasta.

The food will be “from-scratch fresh,” Torre said. “You can usually make it better yourself.”

The goal is not to duplicate traditional Italian-American fare but offer more modern, refreshing and lighter takes.

“We want very unique, very chef-forward dishes with the Italian cuisine as the focal point,” Robert DeLeo said.

To the right of the entrance, Joelle’s bar area will seat 18 between at the bar and at three tables there.

The inside dining area will seat around 44 people at tables and booths, while the outside dining area will seat around 50 people. Between them are large sliding doors that can be left open on nicer days.

The restaurant will be open six days a week for lunch and dinner. It will be closed on Tuesdays.

Why Tuesdays? Many restaurants in Bluffton reduce their hours or close altogether on Sundays and Mondays.

“Coming from New York and coming from an Italian family, we always used to go out for Italian dinner on Sundays,” Robert DeLeo explained. “That’s kind of the day to go out for that cuisine. ... Why not try and compete on those two days when not many places are open?”

This story was originally published March 11, 2024, 11:14 AM.

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Bluffton daffodil farm blooming and ready for visitors. Here’s when it will be open

A colder than usual winter has delayed the expected opening of the U Pick Daffodil farm, but the Bluffton-area attraction’s owners say they are now ready to welcome visitors.A trip to the farm has become a spring rite for families, flower-lovers and photographers, and co-owners Chuck and Diane Merrick expect to be open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 24. The farm may close early if the Merricks begin to run out of blooms.“Cold weather doesn’t hurt the flowers; it just slows them down,” said Chuck Me...

A colder than usual winter has delayed the expected opening of the U Pick Daffodil farm, but the Bluffton-area attraction’s owners say they are now ready to welcome visitors.

A trip to the farm has become a spring rite for families, flower-lovers and photographers, and co-owners Chuck and Diane Merrick expect to be open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 24. The farm may close early if the Merricks begin to run out of blooms.

“Cold weather doesn’t hurt the flowers; it just slows them down,” said Chuck Merrick, who estimated the blooming fields are about two weeks behind where they would be in a typical year.

The weather forecast for Saturday in Bluffton is sunny and windy with a high of 67, according to the National Weather Service in Charleston. Sunday will be sunny with a high near 60.

The fields are located at 48 Calhoun Plantation Road, just off Pinckney Colony Road.

Each stem picked is 50 cents. Cash and card payments will be accepted.

This year, the Merricks likely will open the fields only on weekends because that’s when their family is available to help them. Weather and the lack or abundance of blooms will affect what days the farm is open.

For information about days the farm will be open, watch its Facebook page or go to its website at upickdaffodils.com. Those who’d like to check on the status of the flowers before making a longer commute can also text Chuck Merrick at 843-368-1998.

The U Pick Daffodil tradition started more than 50 years ago, and each year the farm has expanded to meet a growing demand.

Chuck Merrick uses a planting machine purchased from Holland — it is pulled behind a tractor — to plant tens of thousands of daffodil bulbs with varying blooming times so the farm has a longer picking season.

Daffodils don’t grow easily in the Lowcountry climate, he previously told The Island Packet, and every year the farm loses about half of the ones they had planted in earlier years.

Bluffton Chef honored by being named 2024 South Carolina Chef Ambassador

BLUFFTON, S.C. —A Bluffton chef is being recognized in a big way.In this week's Lowcountry Living, we're sharing how she hopes to use her new title to bring positive change to the entire state of South Carolina.Leslie Rohland is head chef and owner of The Cottage, The Juice Hive, May River Coffee Roasters, and the Bluffton Pasta Shoppe.And she says her successful restaurant endeavors are thanks, in part, to her childhood.“Really do the stuff that I remember as a child loving to ...

BLUFFTON, S.C. —

A Bluffton chef is being recognized in a big way.

In this week's Lowcountry Living, we're sharing how she hopes to use her new title to bring positive change to the entire state of South Carolina.

Leslie Rohland is head chef and owner of The Cottage, The Juice Hive, May River Coffee Roasters, and the Bluffton Pasta Shoppe.

And she says her successful restaurant endeavors are thanks, in part, to her childhood.

“Really do the stuff that I remember as a child loving to see. My grandmothers, my grandfathers, my mother and my father do because everyone seemed to be a great cook back then. And just really taking the stuff I love to cook and then being able to serve it and put it on the table," said Rohland.

Rohland’s passion for cooking was just recognized by South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster as she was named just one of three 2024 South Carolina Chef Ambassadors.

She’ll serve in this role for a year, and during that time, one of her main goals is to support local farmers.

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“It’s really nice to know where our food is coming from. It’s nice to be able to see the footprint of where the lettuce is from or the shrimp," Rohland said.

And she hopes her impact will last well beyond her time serving as Chef Ambassador.

“This is some information that really needs to be passed onto our kids. Kind of like the old days, you know, when you were creating recipes basically with what was in your backyard, said Rohland.

Roland says supporting local does more than just stimulate the economy; it also has health benefits for patrons.

“There’s nothing better, I think, than knowing what you’re eating, and knowing where it comes from. You know, we’ve all seen the labels on certain foods that are like, I can’t even pronounce that item. And this is just kind of like, ok, this came from up the road, and it’s strictly just eggplant," Roland said.

Rohland adds it was extra special to be selected as a South Carolina Chef Ambassador now as the program is celebrating its 10th anniversary this year.

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