Can I Use a Witness at a Divorce Hearing?

Written by Jonathan Breeden

February 8, 2019

There are several reasons during a divorce for why you may want to call a witness, and you are typically allowed to do so. When you are going through such a situation, you may wish to establish various facts about you, your spouse, and the marriage. The best way to do that may be to bring in other people who can speak to issues surrounding your marriage. By bringing in one or more witnesses, the judge has another person’s word to base their opinion on, and they do not have to rely on your word alone.

Whether or not you can and should call a witness depends on a number of factors. A lawyer will carefully review your situation and offer candid advice on the best way to handle the divorce and any specific disputes, such as alimony or child custody and support. If you believe your case would benefit from calling a witness at a divorce hearing, contact Breeden Law Office at (919) 661-4970 to speak with an experienced divorce attorney.

Do You Need a Witness at Your Divorce Hearing?

When you go through an uncontested or no-fault divorce, you may not need any witnesses at your divorce hearing. In most cases, you do not need to prove your character, because there are no allegations that you did anything wrong. Typically, the need for witnesses during a divorce arises when you face accusations that reflect negatively on you, or you need to support a claim regarding your spouse.

Why You May Want to Call a Witness During a Divorce

There are several reasons why you may want to call a witness during a divorce. One of the top reasons is for a third party to be a character witness. A character witness is someone who knows you well and can speak to the fiber of your character. This type of witness is important if your morals, ethics, or responsibility are questioned by your spouse. You may want to call a character witness during a child custody dispute when a judge must decide the parenting schedule that is best for a child.

Another reason to call a witness during a divorce is to support accusations you make against your spouse. If you make a claim about your spouse that would affect child custody or another aspect of the divorce, you are going to need to prove it. Baseless accusations will not help you or make you look good in front of the judge. One way to prove your accusations is to have one or more witnesses testify regarding the issue. For example, if you claim your spouse committed marital misconduct, you may have friends and neighbors describe the conduct they witnessed to the court.

Witnesses Can Be Questioned by Both Sides

If you call a witness during your divorce hearing, you need to be aware that your spouse’s attorney can cross-examine them. First, your witness will be placed under oath. Then your attorney will ask them questions. Your divorce attorney and witness will have prepared for this. Your witness knows what questions to expect and how to best answer. When your attorney is finished, then your spouse’s lawyer has the right to also question your witness, and that person must answer truthfully.

Contact Breeden Law Office Today

If you are planning on filing for divorce, or you received notice that your spouse has filed, it is best to contact a North Carolina divorce attorney. By working with an attorney, you have someone to guide you through the legal process and protect your rights and best interests. Jonathan Breeden has years of experience handling divorces in North Carolina. Contact Breeden Law Office at (919) 661-4970 to schedule a consultation of your case.


Divorce In North Carolina: What You Need To Know

A book by Jonathan Breeden