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South Carolina Divorce 101

Divorce is a difficult decision for anyone, whether it's you or your partner who initiates it. It's a painful experience that can leave you feeling shattered and alone in the dark. When you made your wedding vows, you did so with the intention of being together for life. You invested a lot of time and money into your wedding, inviting friends and family from all over South Carolina to share in your joy.

Now, you're faced with the harsh reality that you and your former spouse are no longer together. As your family law attorney in Columbia, SC, we understand how overwhelming this can be. We've assisted many clients through the divorce process and had the knowledge and tools to help them work through it and move on to greener pastures.

The CDH Law Firm Approach to Child Custody in South Carolina

Did you know that the U.S. Census Bureau states that 25% of children younger than 21 live with just one parent while the other parent resides elsewhere in the country? In such circumstances, many families must navigate the complicated and legally complex process of child custody. As seasoned family law attorneys, we have represented clients in all aspects and legal stages of child custody and support.

We focus in providing services for a range of issues, including but not limited to:

  • Drafting Reasonable Proposed Parenting Plans
  • Preparing Child Support Calculations
  • Communication with a Guardian ad Litem (if applicable)
  • Securing De Facto Custodian / Psychological Parent Rights
  • Negotiating Agreements Relating to Child Custody
  • Prosecuting Claims Related to Domestic Violence
  • Prosecuting and Defending Claims for
  • Adoption,
  • Termination of Parental Rights
  • Custody, and
  • Visitation
  • Defending Claims Alleging Abuse / Neglect by the Department of Social Services

Every family has its own distinct characteristics, and as such, child-related agreements must also be customized to fit each unique situation. In South Carolina, our team of skilled family law attorneys takes the time to understand our clients' individual goals and needs and tailor our services accordingly.

 Law Firm Columbia, SC

South Carolina Alimony 101

When you get married, you go into the partnership believing that you'll be together forever. It makes sense, then, that most divorcing couples don't know very much about alimony in South Carolina (also referred to as spousal support). They ask questions such as:

  • Who gets alimony?
  • What is a reasonable amount of alimony?

Fortunately, working with a family law lawyer in Columbia, SC, can answer those questions and make alimony easier to understand and approach.

 Family Support Attorney Columbia, SC
Family Law Attorney Columbia, SC

What is Alimony in South Carolina?

Many individuals often mistake alimony for child support, but they are, in fact, two distinct forms of financial obligation and not mutually exclusive. Alimony was established to safeguard a supported spouse in the event of a divorce or separation. For example, a spouse who did not work during the course of the marriage would generally have a stronger alimony claim than a spouse who worked throughout the marriage. Likewise, a spouse who worked throughout the marriage but made less than the other spouse would have a stronger alimony claim than a spouse who worked and earned equivalent income to the supporting spouse.

In many cases, a spouse may choose to stay at home to tend to the children and manage the household. Oftentimes, the spouse who remains at home has sacrificed their career or education to care for the family. In such instances, a divorce could leave the financially weaker spouse in a state of financial turmoil. Without that support system, they will have to start over from scratch. These are some factors the Court will consider in evaluating an appropriate alimony case. Throughout your marriage, you have structured your quality of life based on a budget determined by your finances. While all expenses are shared by both partners, what happens if you have been financially dependent on your spouse and need to support yourself?

At Cobb, Dill, & Hammett, LLC, we aim to assist you in securing the alimony you need to support both yourself and your children. At the same time, we want to ensure that you are not overpaying your spouse, if you are the one required to pay. You may be required to pay an amount that could leave you in a difficult financial situation. Regardless, it's crucial to have the right legal representation to guide you through the alimony process in South Carolina.

The CDH Law Firm Approach to Alimonyin South Carolina

Some people may assume financial responsibilities to a former partner are end with the filing of a divorce decree. However, if the court has mandated alimony payments, then the financial obligations survive. Failure to meet those obligations can lead to serious legal and financial consequences. Family law attorneys at CHSA Law, LLC have years of experience representing clients throughout the divorce process, including alimony determinations.

Our legal services cover many aspects of alimony law, such as:

  • Negotiating Temporary and Final Alimony Payments
  • Modifying Alimony
  • Providing Advice on Reasonable Alimony
  • Filing to Collect Unpaid Alimony

Though our family law attorneys are fearless negotiators and litigators, we always strive to keep your legal proceedings as seamless and straightforward as possible. Our goal is to help reach an agreement on alimony that is reasonable for both you and your spouse. However, compromises aren't always possible. If needed, our lawyers will fight aggressively on your behalf to help ensure your financial rights are protected.

 Law Firm Columbia, SC

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Trust the Cobb, Dill, & Hammett Difference

Dealing with family law cases can be incredibly trying, particularly when it comes to matters of separation or divorce. As your family law attorney in Columbia, SC, we recognize the challenges you're facing. With that in mind, know that we're committed to offering empathetic legal counsel on your behalf, no matter how contentious or confusing your situation may become. Contact our law offices today for your initial family law consultation.

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Latest News in Columbia, SC

15 interesting facts about Columbia that may surprise you

If you know us, you know we’re here for the deep cuts — and there’s plenty of interesting factoids to go around. As connoisseurs of the quirky and unconventional, we put together a list of the Soda City’s history, oddest characteristics, and more. Maybe you’ve lived here your whole life and know some of this, or maybe you’ll learn something new.Either way, test your local knowledge with these 15 interesting facts.1. The South Caroliniana Library was the first college library in the nat...

If you know us, you know we’re here for the deep cuts — and there’s plenty of interesting factoids to go around. As connoisseurs of the quirky and unconventional, we put together a list of the Soda City’s history, oddest characteristics, and more. Maybe you’ve lived here your whole life and know some of this, or maybe you’ll learn something new.

Either way, test your local knowledge with these 15 interesting facts.

1. The South Caroliniana Library was the first college library in the nation built as a separate building in 1840. The freestanding library was constructed at the University of South Carolina, and you can read the full history of the library here.

2. Columbia has star power as numerous athletes, actors, and authors hail from the capital city. This includes 2020 Masters Tournament champion Dustin Johnson, R&B singer Angie Stone, and Kristin Davis, known for her role as Charlotte on “Sex and the City.”

3. Lake Murray was built in the 1920’s — and at the time — was the largest (50,000 acres) man-made lake in the country. The Saluda Dam (popularly known as the Lake Murray Dam) was also the largest earthen dam in the world when it was built.

4. Georgia O’Keeffe, a well-known modern artist of the 20th century, taught art at Columbia College in 1915. While there, she produced the charcoal sketches that found their way to Alfred Stieglitz – who took up promoting her art… and the rest is history.

5. 1,284. That’s how many toasters Kenneth Huggins has in the world’s largest collection which he stores in his home and a special-built storage house. Soda Citizens hold several world records in the Guinness Book of World Records, including the greatest distance catching a grape in the mouth.

6. Charles F. Bolden — former astronaut and 12th Administrator of NASAgraduated from C. A. Johnson High School in 1964. Charles spent four missions in orbit on the space shuttle, and orbited the Earth 444 times, logging over 680 hours in space.

7. Fort Jackson, the 53,000-acre US Army Training Center in Columbia, is the largest and most active Entry Training Center into the US Army in the nation. It trains ~45,000 basic training Soldiers annually, making up almost 50% of the Army’s basic combat trainees and about 60% of all females entering the Army.

8. Riverbanks Zoo is one of only ten zoos in the US to have koalas on exhibit, and theirs is a permanent exhibit. To best care for the animals, the zoo even flies in eucalyptus from Florida. Learn more about the koalas at Riverbanks and their breeding program here.

9. Did you know that Congaree National Park, South Carolina’s only national park, has 20+ of the tallest known trees of their species? These “champion trees” literally rise above all others and help bring in a lot of visitors to the park.

10. Columbia was one of the first planned cities in the U.S. (And is believed to be in the number two spot, just behind Savannah, Georgia.) It was planned out as a two-mile square around the State House, with the city’s streets designed in a grid.

11. The Barringer Building (1338 Main St.), formerly known as the National Loan and Exchange Bank, was South Carolina’s first skyscraper. Constructed in 1903, the 12-story structure represents advances in building use of steel framework, high-pressure water pipes, and elevators.

12. 71. That’s how many movies have been filmed in Columbia, according to IMDB. Better-known pictures include “Death Sentence” starring Kevin Bacon and scenes filmed in Williams-Brice Stadium in “The Waterboy” and “The Program.”

13. Cola didn’t have any paved streets until 1908 when Main Street was paved. The city even tried wooden blocks before considering paving on Washington Street, only to find that the wooden blocks would float away in heavy rain. It took the city almost a decade to replace the blocks with asphalt on Washington Street in 1925.

14. Founded in 1844, the publishing firm of R. L. Bryan Company is Columbia’s oldest operating business. Now located at 301 Greystone Blvd., the company has been the textbook distributor for the state of South Carolina since 1901.

15. Assembly Street is 150 feet wide, which is about 50 feet wider than other streets around town. Why? In the 1700s, the decision on the width was based on the belief that mosquitoes were unable to travel more than 60 feet without dying from starvation to get across.

Your turn. Think you can get one over on us? Let us know your favorite local trivia tidbit and you just might make it into the newsletter.

Columbia’s River Rat Brewery to close after a decade. Here’s when the last day will be

A brewery that has been a popular destination in Columbia for the last decade has announced it plans to close.River Rat Brewery, located at 1231 Shop Road, announced Tuesday night on its social media channels that it plans to close its doors. Its last day open to the public will be Dec...

A brewery that has been a popular destination in Columbia for the last decade has announced it plans to close.

River Rat Brewery, located at 1231 Shop Road, announced Tuesday night on its social media channels that it plans to close its doors. Its last day open to the public will be Dec. 30.

“We want to thank all of our wonderful customers and employees for supporting us over these past 10+ years,” River Rat posted. “Memories that will always be close to our heart! RRB grew organically over these last 10 years and what a pleasure it was to serve the great community of Columbia and beyond.”

River Rat was one of the first handful of Columbia-based craft breweries to hit the local scene about a decade ago. Two other breweries that, like River Rat, were located near Williams-Brice Stadium also closed in recent years: Conquest Brewing, which was located on Stadium Road, closed in 2019, and Swamp Cabbage Brewing on Brookwood Drive closed in 2022

River Rat didn’t offer a reason for its closing in its Tuesday social media posts.

“Though it is time to end this chapter we want to thank all who visited our establishment throughout these 10 years,” River Rat wrote. “The experiences we shared with our customers and employees will forever be in our hearts.”

The brewery said it will have a 25% off sale on all merchandise and beer this week.

Aside from a host of original beers — Kerry’s Peanut Butter Porter is a favorite — River Rat also has offered a full food menu at the Shop Road site, including burgers, barbecue sandwiches, quesadillas, wings and more.

The coming River Rat closure is the latest news in a bruising few weeks on the Midlands dining scene, as a host of long-running establishments have either closed or announced closures.

Al’s Upstairs, the Italian restaurant that has been at 300 Meeting St. in West Columbia for 44 years, announced its coming closure. Owner Al Loftis is retiring, and the restaurant’s last day will be Dec. 19.

Village Idiot announced on Tuesday that it would close its Forest Acres location at 4517 Forest Drive by the end of the month. The Forest Drive location has been in business for 14 years. The company’s Five Points and Whaley Street locations remain open, and franchising plans for the company are continuing.

In late November, Alodia’s Cucina Italiana closed the doors at its Irmo location at 2736 North Lake Drive after 15 years. The Lexington Alodia’s remains open.

And Jin Jin Chinese restaurant, which had been located at 469 Sunset Blvd. in West Columbia for 29 years, announced on Dec. 2 it would be shutting its doors.

This story was originally published December 6, 2023, 9:08 AM.

New Roadmap to Sustain SC to accelerate development in South Carolina

Listen to this articleSustain SC has launched the Roadmap to Sustain SC, which identifies seven key accelerators that will move South Carolina forward as a sustainable state ensuring economic prosperity and protection of the state’s quality of life.The plan was unveiled during Sustain SC’s recent second annual Sustainability Symposium in Columbia, according to a Sustain SC news release.“This is a big moment for our organization, which has dedicated an entire year to developing the Roadmap to Sustain SC,...

Listen to this article

Sustain SC has launched the Roadmap to Sustain SC, which identifies seven key accelerators that will move South Carolina forward as a sustainable state ensuring economic prosperity and protection of the state’s quality of life.

The plan was unveiled during Sustain SC’s recent second annual Sustainability Symposium in Columbia, according to a Sustain SC news release.

“This is a big moment for our organization, which has dedicated an entire year to developing the Roadmap to Sustain SC,” said Ethel Bunch, founder and CEO of Sustain SC, in the release. “This was a passion project and enhances Sustain SC’s mission of connecting the sustainability goals of business in South Carolina with local solutions for the benefit of our economy, environment, and people. We are proud to serve as a model for other states who work toward similar goals.”

The Roadmap undertaking began after South Carolina ranked 37th out of 50 states in a 2021 U.S. Sustainable Development Report released by the Sustainable Development Solutions Network, the release stated. As a result, Sustain SC partnered with Ernst and Young (EY) to assess how South Carolina could improve its low position on the list and be competitive with neighboring states. Through comprehensive research and analysis, researchers mapped out a plan for future sustainable development reflective of the unique commerce and conservation needs of the state, The Roadmap to Sustain SC.

The Roadmap initiatives include the following, the release stated:

“South Carolina recognizes the growing importance modern businesses place upon achieving sustainability goals, and S.C. Commerce is dedicated to working alongside industry partners, like Sustain SC, to provide the support necessary to make those achievements a reality,” said Harry M. Lightsey III, secretary of the South Carolina Department of Commerce, said in the release. “The Roadmap to Sustain SC will help set apart South Carolina’s commitment to our business community.”

For the South Carolina Office of Resilience, which established a formal partnership with Sustain SC this year, the Roadmap to Sustain SC will support SCOR on a number of initiatives.

“Resiliency and nature-based solutions are the key to moving South Carolina forward,” said Ben Duncan, executive director of the South Carolina Office of Resilience. “These focus areas will help our organization develop strategies to minimize the impact of disasters on the communities and citizens of South Carolina.”

Topgolf considering Columbia-area location along Interstate 26

COLUMBIA — Topgolf has expressed initial interest in building a location in the Columbia area.The mega driving range entertainment company has entered the development process in Lexington County for property at 309 Paris Road, along Interstate 26 northwest of downtown Columbia, according to Planning Commission reports.In an email, Topgolf said it did not have any information to share about a possible venue in the area at this time. Property owners of the 13-acre parcel near the Piney Grove Road interchange, Greenville-bas...

COLUMBIA — Topgolf has expressed initial interest in building a location in the Columbia area.

The mega driving range entertainment company has entered the development process in Lexington County for property at 309 Paris Road, along Interstate 26 northwest of downtown Columbia, according to Planning Commission reports.

In an email, Topgolf said it did not have any information to share about a possible venue in the area at this time. Property owners of the 13-acre parcel near the Piney Grove Road interchange, Greenville-based Realty Link, also did not respond to messages left by The Post and Courier.

This is not the first time Topgolf has entered development talks with Lexington County, according to county planning officials. The company had been exploring possible development of the property prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, but those efforts never progressed.

There is no guarantee that a deal for a new venue will come to fruition. But if Topgolf were to go forward with development, Columbia would mark the company’s fourth location in South Carolina, joining multi-story driving range towers built in Myrtle Beach, Greenville and North Charleston.

SUMTER — A German manufacturer of magnets used in electric vehicles is set to create 300 new jobs and invest over half a billion dollars.

Sumter will be home to the first U.S. facility for e-VAC Magnetics, which produces rare earth permanent magnets. CEO Erik Eschen and Gov. Henry McMaster made the announcement at a press conference Dec. 13.

The manufacturing plant will be placed on an 85-acre lot at Pocotaligo Industrial Park and is expected to be completed by fall 2025.

The announcement comes after the Department of Defense in September announced plans to expand domestic manufacturing of rare earth permanent magnets. The DOD plans included a $94.1 million award to e-VAC. The magnets, aside from being used in EVs, are used in the creation of military vehicles such as the F-35 plane and unmanned aerial vehicles, according to a DOD press release.

It also comes a day after electric vehicle battery factory AESC announced it would expand its Florence facility, adding an additional 450 jobs to the already 1,170 announced in December of last year, and joins the incoming Scout Motors plant in Blythewood as state officials continue to turn their focus on expanding the state’s capabilities when it comes to EVs.

“The automobile industry is really important to the state of South Carolina,” said state Secretary of Commerce Harry M. Lightsey III. “It’s our largest manufacturing sector. It’s critically important that they make a pivot from internal combustion engines to the battery electric vehicles.”

Columbia, S.C. Brokers Join Forces Under the Century 21 Brand

EXCEL Real Estate, now doing business as Century 21 EXCEL, and its affiliated agents will have access to the brand’s suite of business building tools, state-of-the-art technology and international network thanks to the company’s merger with Century 21 803 Realty, while still continuing to leverage the local brand caché the brokerage has developed as EXCEL Real Estate.The combined operations of Century 21 803 Realty and Century 21 EXCEL now consist of six offices and more than 200 affiliated agents serving clients fr...

EXCEL Real Estate, now doing business as Century 21 EXCEL, and its affiliated agents will have access to the brand’s suite of business building tools, state-of-the-art technology and international network thanks to the company’s merger with Century 21 803 Realty, while still continuing to leverage the local brand caché the brokerage has developed as EXCEL Real Estate.

The combined operations of Century 21 803 Realty and Century 21 EXCEL now consist of six offices and more than 200 affiliated agents serving clients from Greenville to Charleston.

EXCEL Real Estate founders Candice McCuien and Kenny McCuien have both assumed the role of Executive Vice President for Century 21 EXCEL and will oversee the transition. Candice, who founded her firm in 2016 with her husband Kenny, is a highly regarded local industry leader, currently serving as the 2024 President-elect for the Central Carolina REALTORS® Association, which she will lead in 2025. She is the first African American female president in the history of the association. Century 21 Excel is an African-American owned brokerages in the state.

Tim Williams, now the owner of both Century 21 803 Realty and Century 21 EXCEL, says the merger brings together two like-minded companies which are both well-known for their top-notch service to clients as well as their deep knowledge of the market.

“Candice and I have known each for a long time and when we looked at how we both wanted to grow our presence in the state, we knew we could do more together,” said Williams. “Our partnership has expanded our scope in terms of market share, agent count and service area,” he continued. “Candice has successfully managed three distinct markets and her foothold in Greenville to the north and Charleston to the south complements our combined presence in the Columbia metro area. Together, we will expand our presence into untapped markets.”

The combined companies’ deep and accomplished leadership bench includes Leland Morrison, COO, who was instrumental in bringing this partnership to fruition; Christopher Smith, Broker in Charge of Century 21 803 Realty and Century 21 EXCEL Columbia and Greenville branches; James Means, Director of Mentorship for Columbia and Greenville; and Stephen Kohn, Broker in Charge of the Charleston Branch and Director of Low-Country Growth. Kohn is the current Vice-President for the Charleston Trident Association of REALTORS®. He will also be the President in 2026 for the Charleston Trident Association of REALTORS.

“Tim, Candice and Kenny, along with their experienced and leadership team, are well-positioned to expand the firm’s presence along the Route 26 corridor, creating a seamless service area by connecting key South Carolina cities,” said Mike Miedler, president and CEO of Century 21 Real Estate LLC.

Candice reports that her affiliated agents are excited about the opportunity to take their business to the next level. “With the tools and resources provided by the Century 21® brand, the agents will possess the ability to truly differentiate themselves from the competition and stand out amongst peers,” she said. “In addition, the robust professional development resources will support increased agent productivity. I also believe that they will be very excited about now being placed on the international stage where the success can be celebrated across the world thanks to the reach and power of the Century 21 network.”

SOURCE Century 21 803 Realty and Century 21 Excel

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