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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 Kiawah Island, 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 Kiawah Island, 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 Kiawah Island, SC, can answer those questions and make alimony easier to understand and approach.

 Family Support Attorney Kiawah Island, SC
Family Law Attorney Kiawah Island, 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 Kiawah Island, 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 Kiawah Island, 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 Kiawah Island, SC

2031 PGA Championship will be hosted at the Ocean Course at Kiawah Island Golf Resort

...KIAWAH ISLAND, S.C. (WCIV) — The 113th PGA Championship in May 2031 will be hosted at The Ocean Course at Kiawah Island Golf Resort.The PGA America announced Kiawah Island would host the 2031 championship on April 17. The 2029 Girls and Boys Junior PGA Championships will also be contested at The Ocean Course and Turtle Point Golf Course at Kiawah Island Golf Resort.Read more: ...

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KIAWAH ISLAND, S.C. (WCIV) — The 113th PGA Championship in May 2031 will be hosted at The Ocean Course at Kiawah Island Golf Resort.

The PGA America announced Kiawah Island would host the 2031 championship on April 17. The 2029 Girls and Boys Junior PGA Championships will also be contested at The Ocean Course and Turtle Point Golf Course at Kiawah Island Golf Resort.

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"We are ecstatic to bring the Junior PGA Championships and PGA Championship to The Ocean Course at Kiawah Island Golf Resort in 2029 and 2031," PGA of America President John Lindert said in a statement. "Past PGA Championships at Kiawah Island have provided no shortage of memorable moments and historic performances, all taking place along a breathtaking coastal setting. The Ocean Course's challenging layout and rich history make it an ideal destination for our championships."

This will be the third PGA Championship hosted at Kiawah Island, following the 2012 and 2021 championships.

"We are proud to again be selected as the host course for the 2031 PGA Championship," Kiawah Island Golf Resort President Roger Warren said in a statement. "The Ocean Course at Kiawah Island Golf Resort, Pete Dye's brilliant seaside design, will present a formidable challenge for the strongest, all-professional field in major championship golf. We are confident our partnership with the PGA of America and the local community will produce another world class event."

Read more: Lowcountry youth soccer teams gain firsthand European experience during spring break

Explore Charleston CEO Helen Hill issued a statement on Kiawah Island Golf Resort the 2031 PGA Championship.

"Congratulations to Kiawah Island Golf Resort and the Town of Kiawah Island. The remarkable opportunities to host the 2031 PGA Championship and the 2029 Girls and Boys Junior PGA Championships are realized only through community and industry leaders' collective vision and unwavering commitment."

"Events of this caliber are momentous for the entire Charleston region, and we are sincerely grateful for the PGA's trust in our community's capacity to host world-class championships catering to players, patrons, and other stakeholders."

"Drawing from our past experiences with prestigious events like the 1991 Ryder Cup, the 2019 U.S. Women's Open, and the 2012 and 2021 PGA Championships, we understand the transformative power of these tournaments. They not only spotlight the resort, island, region, and state on a global scale, but also yield substantial economic benefits."

"Despite pandemic-induced limitations on attendance, the 2021 PGA Championship generated nearly $60 million in economic impact, bolstering state and local economies with over $8 million in tax revenues. The event's international broadcast reached over half a billion households, garnering over $160 million in media exposure for Kiawah and the surrounding area."

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"The Explore Charleston team eagerly anticipates collaborating with the PGA, resort, town, and broader destination stakeholders to ensure the unparalleled success of these championships."

THE OCEAN COURSE AT KIAWAH ISLAND GOLF RESORT TO HOST 2031 PGA CHAMPIONSHIP

2029 Junior PGA Championships to be held at The Ocean Course and Turtle PointFRISCO, Texas & KIAWAH ISLAND, S.C. – The PGA of America announced today that The Ocean Course at Kiawah Island Golf Resort in Kiawah Island, South Carolina, will host the 2031 PGA Championship. Additionally, the 2029 Girls and Boys Junior PGA Championships will be contested at The Ocean Course and Turtle Point Golf Course at Kiawah Island Golf Resort.The 113th PGA Championship, scheduled for May 2031, marks the third time the strongest fie...

2029 Junior PGA Championships to be held at The Ocean Course and Turtle Point

FRISCO, Texas & KIAWAH ISLAND, S.C. – The PGA of America announced today that The Ocean Course at Kiawah Island Golf Resort in Kiawah Island, South Carolina, will host the 2031 PGA Championship. Additionally, the 2029 Girls and Boys Junior PGA Championships will be contested at The Ocean Course and Turtle Point Golf Course at Kiawah Island Golf Resort.

The 113th PGA Championship, scheduled for May 2031, marks the third time the strongest field in golf will compete for the Wanamaker Trophy along South Carolina’s coast.

The Ocean Course previously hosted the 2012 and 2021 PGA Championships, and will join elite company as just the ninth course to host three or more PGA Championships. The PGA of America also conducted the 1991 Ryder Cup, 2005 PGA Professional Championship and the 2007 Senior PGA Championship there.

“We are ecstatic to bring the Junior PGA Championships and PGA Championship to The Ocean Course at Kiawah Island Golf Resort in 2029 and 2031,” said PGA of America President John Lindert, PGA Director of Golf at The Country Club of Lansing. “Past PGA Championships at Kiawah Island have provided no shortage of memorable moments and historic performances, all taking place along a breathtaking coastal setting. The Ocean Course’s challenging layout and rich history make it an ideal destination for our Championships.”

At the 2021 PGA Championship, 50-year-old Phil Mickelson became the oldest men’s major champion in golf history. He registered a final-round 1-over-par 73 to finish at 6-under-par and clinch the two-shot victory.

The 2012 PGA Championship saw a 23-year-old Rory McIlroy cruise to a record-setting victory. The Northern Ireland native posted a 6-under-par 66 on Sunday to finish at 13-under-par 275. McIlroy’s eight-stroke victory surpassed the PGA Championship record for victory margin set by Jack Nicklaus in 1980.

The 1991 Ryder Cup proved to be a significant moment in the history of golf’s greatest team event. Following an intense, drama-filled two days, the three-day contest came down to the final hole of the final match between Hale Irwin and Bernhard Langer.

With the U.S. holding a 14-13 lead and the match tied, Langer needed to win the 18th to capture a full point and secure the 14-14 tie for Europe to retain the Cup. Following Irwin’s bogey, Langer’s six-foot putt for par narrowly missed, resulting in a 14 ½ to 13 ½ victory for the home team.

The Junior PGA Championships, two of golf’s major championships for juniors, continue to serve as a springboard for many of the PGA TOUR and LPGA Tour’s biggest stars. Tiger Woods, Scottie Scheffler, Jordan Speith and Justin Thomas competed in past editions while past Girls Junior PGA winners include Inbee Park, Yuka Saso, Lexi Thompson and Rose Zhang.

“We are proud to again be selected as the host course for the 2031 PGA Championship,” said Kiawah Island Golf Resort President Roger Warren, PGA. “The Ocean Course at Kiawah Island Golf Resort, Pete Dye’s brilliant seaside design, will present a formidable challenge for the strongest, all-professional field in major championship golf. We are confident our partnership with the PGA of America and the local community will produce another world class event.”

The Ocean Course, designed by Pete and Alice Dye from 1989-91, is widely regarded as one of the best golf courses in the country. Located on the easternmost end of Kiawah Island, it boasts the most seaside holes in the Northern Hemisphere with 10 hugging the Atlantic and the other eight running parallel to those. Although the course was originally planned to sit behind the dunes, Alice Dye suggested raising the entire course to give players unobstructed views of Kiawah Island’s stunning coastline on every hole.

The Ocean Course has consistently ranked among Golf Digest’s 100 Greatest and 100 Greatest Public Courses in the United States, including 24th (100 Greatest) and third (100 Greatest Public) in 2023-24.

For more information on the PGA Championship, visit here.

About the PGA Championship

The PGA Championship is the only all-professional major in men’s golf. It began in 1916, just months after the birth of the PGA of America, and today features one of the deepest international fields in golf. Since 1994, it has perennially featured the strongest field in golf with the most top-100 players in the Official World Golf Rankings.

About PGA of America

The PGA of America is one of the world’s largest sports organizations, composed of more than 30,000 PGA of America Golf Professionals who love the game, are expert coaches, operators and business leaders, and work daily to drive interest, inclusion and participation in the sport. The PGA of America owns and operates numerous championships and events, including major championships for men, women, seniors and the Ryder Cup, one of the world’s foremost sporting events. For more information, visit PGA.com and follow us on X, formerly known as Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

About Kiawah Island Golf Resort

Located along 10 miles of pristine beach less than 30 miles south of Charleston, S.C., Kiawah Island Golf Resort consistently ranks as one of the country’s top resorts. It includes The Sanctuary at Kiawah Island Golf Resort, a 255-room hotel awarded with a triple Forbes Five-Star rating for hotel, restaurant and spa, and AAA Five Diamond rating for hotel and spa. Additional accommodations include nearly 500 private villas and luxury homes, and four Cottages at The Ocean Course. Renowned for its nature and recreational offerings, the resort features five championship golf courses, including The Ocean Course, host of the 1991 Ryder Cup, and the 2012 and 2021 PGA Championships. For 15 of the past 17 years, the resort has ranked as the number-one tennis resort in the world by TennisResortsOnline.com. For more information, visit kiawahresort.com.

Media Contacts

PGA of America

Greg Dillard, 561-308-8013, gdillard@pgahq.com

Kiawah Island Golf Resort

Bryan Hunter, 843-327-2528, bryan_hunter@kiawahresort.com

Kiawah Island ponders next steps after proposed sale of Captain Sams Spit

KIAWAH ISLAND, S.C. (WCSC) - The Town of Kiawah is continuing its fight to protect Captain Sams Spit, a sandy inlet that’s stirred a legal battle over development rights for years.Officials became aware that Kiawah Partners, the owners of the land in question, have now offered to sell the land to the state. An agreement between Kiawah Partners and the town recently expired, prompting the town t...

KIAWAH ISLAND, S.C. (WCSC) - The Town of Kiawah is continuing its fight to protect Captain Sams Spit, a sandy inlet that’s stirred a legal battle over development rights for years.

Officials became aware that Kiawah Partners, the owners of the land in question, have now offered to sell the land to the state. An agreement between Kiawah Partners and the town recently expired, prompting the town to look for options to keep the land untouched.

Kiawah Town Council discussed what action to take in the executive session this week after they got word of the possible sale. Council members authorized their legal counsel to send a note to South Carolina Attorney General Emory Smith regarding Captain Sams Spit.

Executive Director of the South Carolina Environmental Law Project Amy Armstrong explained that it’s unknown what state ownership would mean.

“The state hasn’t said what it would do, who would actually hold it, or what they would do with it,” Armstrong said. “It’s not necessarily assured that just because the state buys it that it’s going to stay exactly how it is today.”

The letter includes three attachments, one of which is the town’s demand letter to Kiawah Development Partners, dated Jan. 8, 2024, and it lays out obligations that were outlined in the contract between the town and developer that recently expired, that the developer did not fulfill.

One concern is that money will be wasted if the state agrees to purchase the land because Kiawah Partners should have already placed a conservation easement on the Spit, recorded a no-development covenant, and conveyed portions of the spit to the island’s Home Owners Association.

“The public doesn’t see why public funds need to be added to the cost of locking down what was supposed to be locked down by an agreement,” Kiawah property owner and land development lawyer Tim Hazel said. “So, in our opinion, it seems that we’re looking at potentially a waste of public funds to get to the point where we should be anyway.”

Kiawah town officials said in part, “The Town of Kiawah Island has a duty to ensure the developer honors its obligations under the development agreement.”

Island property owner and land development lawyer Tim Hazel said while this back-and-forth battle is extremely frustrating, he’s glad that the town is on the same side of this as residents.

Hazel said while this back-and-forth battle is extremely frustrating, he’s glad that the town is on the same side of this as residents.

“It’s funny because we’re not aligned on some of the issues involving development on Kiawah Island but this issue in particular, I think to the credit of the town council and the mayor, there is an effort to enforce what the town had negotiated in 2013,” Hazel said.

Armstrong said it’s encouraging that permanent protection for Sams Spit is potentially closer, but she’s keeping a cautious eye out for what comes next.

“If the community association owns part of the land and then there’s a conservation easement on the other part that the Kiawah conservancy holds, then that assurance that there’s not going to development out there and that would be a favorable outcome,” Armstrong said.

Kiawah councilmember Brad Belt said he could not comment on pending legal issues, but that “As has been noted at public meetings, the Town’s goal is to both preserve the access the public currently has to Beachwalker Park and the beach areas of the Spit and to protect the highlands area of the Spit, which is critical habitat for bobcats, nesting sea turtles and migrating shorebirds, from any development.”

Kiawah Partners declined a request for comment.

Copyright 2024 WCSC. All rights reserved.

Editorial: Stop wasting money; start conserving Capt Sam's Spit

For years, we have called for the conservation of the fragile, ever-shifting southern tip of Kiawah Island, a slice of land many know as Capt. Sam’s Spit. We reiterate that call for a deal — and encourage leaders in our state government and conservation community to focus anew on it — particularly as the property remains in between controversial efforts to develop homes there.As The Post and Courier’s Toby Cox reported, the property is tied up in a complicated legal dispute over a 2013 Amended and Restated Deve...

For years, we have called for the conservation of the fragile, ever-shifting southern tip of Kiawah Island, a slice of land many know as Capt. Sam’s Spit. We reiterate that call for a deal — and encourage leaders in our state government and conservation community to focus anew on it — particularly as the property remains in between controversial efforts to develop homes there.

As The Post and Courier’s Toby Cox reported, the property is tied up in a complicated legal dispute over a 2013 Amended and Restated Development Agreement between the town of Kiawah Island and developer Kiawah Resort Associates that expired last month. At issue is whether the developer met contractual obligations to transfer ownership of some of the property’s highlands to the community association and to protect the remaining highlands with deed restrictions. These actions would protect the spit from development efforts, but the developer says these obligations were contingent on development, which did not occur.

Since 2008, developers have sought state permits to build 50 homes on the land, but the complexity of running a road and utility lines to the property has resulted in years-long court battles and appeals that stopped the plans. But those hoping for the property’s conservation should not count on permitting battles and environmental lawsuits alone; the land has some value, and its owners deserve to be compensated to some degree for a conservation agreement that would preclude development. Of course, there may be a wide disagreement over the dollars involved, given the property’s proximity to the high-valued real estate of Kiawah Island as well as the folly of building on land so subject to erosion and flooding.

Town officials sent the developer a letter this month asking it to fulfill the two obligations, and it’s certainly possible this could lead to yet another legal battle. That turn would be regrettable. It would be much better for both sides to focus on a conservation deal that would settle this matter once and for all.

The U.S. Supreme Court issued a precedent-setting ruling in 1992 in a case only five islands north of Kiawah (Lucas v. South Carolina Coastal Council), saying if government restricts all potential use of a piece of private property, that is considered a "taking" — and the property owner is owed compensation. We agree with what Amy Armstrong, executive director and general counsel at the S.C. Environmental Law Project, told Ms. Cox: "As long as the developer owns the property, there’s a threat."

The property is valuable for conservation not only because it provides habitat for wildlife but also because it adjoins Charleston County's Kiawah Beachwalker Park, which is so popular most summer weekends that there is a waiting list for its limited parking spaces. And that's not surprising: Beachwalker offers access to more than a mile's worth of beach and creekfront, around which bottlenose dolphins, sea turtles and seabirds are common visitors. In short, it's one of South Carolina's most pristine sections of beach publicly accessible by car.

Both South Carolina and Charleston County leaders should engage on ways to strike a conservation deal here for many reasons, including the prevention of unwise attempts to harden the land for development and the preservation of wildlife habitat and high-quality public access. The time to strike that deal is now, before more dollars are wasted on legal battles or ill-considered development plans.

Click here for more opinion content from The Post and Courier.

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Resident concerns push beach boardwalk changes on Kiawah Island

KIAWAH ISLAND, S.C. (WCSC) - A new concern surrounding development being built on Kiawah Island has recently come to light by residents and change is now in the works.The questions revolve around two boardwalks that were built for “The Cape,” beachfront condominium complexes, to give the people that will be staying there beach access.The boardwalks stick out too far onto the beach, and it raised a red flag for Jim Gidcumb, who bikes on the beach daily.“At high tide, all of a sudden there’s this bo...

KIAWAH ISLAND, S.C. (WCSC) - A new concern surrounding development being built on Kiawah Island has recently come to light by residents and change is now in the works.

The questions revolve around two boardwalks that were built for “The Cape,” beachfront condominium complexes, to give the people that will be staying there beach access.

The boardwalks stick out too far onto the beach, and it raised a red flag for Jim Gidcumb, who bikes on the beach daily.

“At high tide, all of a sudden there’s this boardwalk that runs right into the ocean,” Gidcumb said. “I could not pass it and neither could pedestrians or emergency vehicles, and so I said something isn’t right here.”

After he and others expressed concerns, staff with DHEC’s Ocean and Coastal Resource Management came on-site to assess if the builds were compliant. They determined that recent beach erosion caused the boardwalks to be on the active beach, and the developer is working to shorten the structures.

“It’s a real safety hazard if you can’t traverse this beach at all hours,” Gidcumb said.

The Town of Kiawah said they are assessing to ensure that the boardwalks are compliant and respond to needs of accessibility for emergency and code enforcement vehicles.

“The next step will be to figure out how far back these boardwalks need to be to be in compliance,” Gidcumb said.

DHEC said as long as the boardwalks are shortened properly, they will meet the requirements of the applicable state regulation.

“It would be better to be proactive than reactive, as we’re kind of in a reactive mode now, but that’s fine,” Gidcumb said. “Catching it before it was completed means it can now be addressed and remediated.”

Gidcumb said at the end of the day he just wants to ride his bike on the beach safely and he appreciates the town and developer’s response on this issue.

For more information about this from the Town of Kiawah, click here.

Copyright 2024 WCSC. All rights reserved.

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