Family Law FAQS

by ilaos
Family law faqs

What is a Divorce?

It is when two people have their marriage judicially terminated. There are many other questions people might have about divorce in Marietta and all of Cobb County, Ga.

Where Do You File For A Divorce?

You need to file it in the superior court of the county where your spouse resided. There are some exceptions to this rule, but generally speaking, this is where it should be filed.

What’s the Processing Time For Divorce?

Divorces can be completed in as short as 31 days after the Defendant is served or take several years. The length of time to get a divorce can be lessened if both parties agree on the terms of the divorce, and this includes dividing up property, dividing up the debt, deciding the amount of child support,if any, and agreeing upon the custody and visitation terms.

Are Divorces Expensive?

Each divorce costs differently, so this means there’s no set fee.

Do You Need a Divorce Attorney?

It is advisable to retain an attorney, because the legal system is very complex. You could give up important rights or items if you don’t have an attorney to help and guide you. When you hire a knowledgeable and experienced attorney, you can rest easier knowing that you have someone who knows the law and will help you to get the best results in your case.

Legal Separation: What Is It?

There is no such thing as a legal separation action in the state of Georgia. There is, however, an action called a separate maintenance action. The separate maintenance action is used to obtain an order for support, when two spouses separate and one needs and should be awarded support from the other. The court can also decide on a other issues, such as child custody, child support and alimony. The separate maintenance action can be changed to be a divorce should either party want to go forward with divorce.

Is Divorce The Right Option?

You and your family counselor should discuss this question.

Are You Ready To Proceed With A Divorce?

It is important to be prepared when proceeding with a divorce. Before you proceed with one, you should know what your legal rights are. You should try and have a good understanding of your financial position. Make copies of important financial documents and put them in a safe place. It is a good idea to discuss your case with an experienced attorney.

What are Grounds For Divorce In Georgia?

In Georgia, there are 13 statutory grounds for divorce. Some of these grounds include cruel treatment, adultery, desertion and habitual intoxication or drug addiction.

Does There Have To Be A Reason For The Divorce?

The answer to this question is no. As long as one party states that there is no chance that the marriage can be saved, then they can proceed with a divorce.

How quick can I get divorced?

The soonest you can get divorced is 31 days after service of the divorce papers.

Can I get a divorce if my spouse objects?

Yes in Georgia, you can get divorced regardless of whether your spouse objects.

Is there any required period of separation before I file for divorce?

No, Georgia does not require any period of separation before a divorce is filed.

Settle Or Divorce: Which Is Better?

Settling is always better and litigation should be a last resort, because it can consume a lot of time and let’s not mention it can be costly and drain you emotionally. Even the judicial system encourages settlement. In matter of fact, statistics show that more than 90% of cases settle.

What If Your Spouse Won’t Agree to the Divorce?

Only one party needs to convince the courts that the marriage is so broken that it cannot be repaired, and that there is no chance of reconciling with one another.

If You Had An Affair, Does It Impact The Outcome Of The Divorce?

If any claims of adultery are made, they must be proven. If it is proven to be the cause of the separation, then adultery by the spouse is a bar to receiving alimony. Adultery can also have an impact on other issues.

Residency Requirements And Filing For Divorce

A spouse can file for the divorce if he or she has been a resident of the State of Georgia for at least a minimum of six months before filing for divorce. If the spouse who is filing has not been a resident of the State of Georgia for six months, then the divorce can still be filed if the other spouse has been a resident of the State of Georgia for at least six months. As for filing for a divorce, the plaintiff files what is known as a Complaint for Divorce or a Petition for Divorce, which includes information on the marriage, assets, debts and things of that nature. The complaint or petition can either be served to the defendant by the sheriff, by a private process server, or the other spouse can sign a document acknowledging that a copy was received.

Can You Live Apart Without Getting A Divorce?

Yes you can. However, if you need to receive support from your spouse, then you may want to file a separate maintenance action. When a separate maintenance action is filed, the spouses will still be married, but they will be living apart, and alimony or child support might be ordered to be paid.

What Happens To Property In A Divorce?

Marital property is property that was obtained during the period of the marriage, but the exception is property that was given to one of the parties as a gift from a third party or was inherited. Non-marital property also includes property that was obtained prior to the marriage. Each party is entitled to his or her non-marital property as long as it has been kept separate. The marital property is awarded to the parties on the basis of what is called “equitable division.” Equitable means what is fair. What is fair depends on various factors. If the parties can agree on how to divide the property, then they can ask the court to approve their agreement and have the order divide the property as they have agreed. If the parties cannot agree on how to divide the property, then the court or the jury, if a jury trial is demanded, will decide how to divide the marital property.

Why Would Someone Want To Request Separate Maintenance Action?

It is a good option for people facing jurisdictional limitations, as well as being a good option for people who need financial support, but are not ready for divorce. Sometimes religion plays a role in wanting separate maintenance action instead of a divorce.

Are There Alternatives To A Court Trial?

Some of the alternatives include independent settlement, collaboration or arbitration.

What Does a No-Fault Divorce Mean?

This term means that when it comes to the ground for the divorce, the court does not have to determine any “at fault” ground. The ground for getting a divorce has to be proven by a party in order for the court to grant a divorce. The “no fault” ground is a basis for a divorce which does not involve “fault.” It is enough if one party simply states that the marriage is “irretrievably broken.” Anyone can get a divorce even if the other person does not want the divorce. If one of the spouses wants the divorce and says that the marriage is over, then that person will be able to get a divorce.

Plaintiff In Divorce: Are There Advantages?

The main advantage of being a plaintiff is that you usually get to speak first, as well as last during each phase of the divorce trial, if there is a trial.

What’s the Difference Between Divorce And Annulment?

The difference between divorce and annulment is that an annulment is the undoing of a marriage based upon certain allowed reasons as if it never existed, while a divorce is a proceeding which ends a marriage but the parties are still considered to have been married in the past.

What are the Grounds For An Annulment?

If the marriage was never consummated, then an annulment might be granted. For example, if one of the parties was fraudulently mislead by the other party, or if one of the parties did not have the mental ability to understand that they were getting married, then an annulment may be granted.

Alimony: What Is It?

Alimony is support provided by one party to the other. It may be a lump sum amount or be periodic payments. It may be temporary, for a specific period of time, or permanent. The amount is based upon the needs of the one receiving it and the ability of the one paying to pay. There are several other factors to be considered in whether alimony is awarded and how much will be awarded. There is no set formula. If alimony is awarded and the person who is supposed to be paying it fails to pay, then an action for contempt can be filed to force the person to pay. The person who is not paying, if the failure to pay is considered willful and the person is found to have the ability to pay, can be forced to pay the past due amount immediately or on a schedule, can be put in jail, and can be ordered to pay attorney’s fees to the one who filed the contempt action. A person who is ordered to pay alimony can have his employer required to pay the alimony directly to the former spouse who was awarded alimony.

Can I get alimony?

Whether you will be awarded alimony depends on a variety of different factors, including the length of the marriage, the cause of the divorce, the employment circumstances of the parties, the health and age of the parties, the financial assets of the parties, and the Judge assigned to your case.

What Happens While You Wait To Go To The Final Hearing?

A spouse can request a temporary hearing. At the temporary hearing, the Court may order temporary, exclusive possession of a home, temporary custody, temporary alimony, temporary child support, and attorney’s fees to assist in the representation during the divorce.

What Happens At The Final Trial?

A spouse can request a temporary hearing. At the temporary hearing, the Court may order temporary, exclusive possession of a home, temporary custody, temporary alimony, temporary child support, and attorney’s fees to assist in the representation during the divorce.

Who Stays At The Residence Where The Spouses Live?

The spouses may both stay in the residence during the divorce, unless the Court orders that only one of the spouse can live in the residence during the divorce. The Court can order this at a temporary hearing. Sometimes parties can live together while the divorce is pending, and other times it is better if the parties do not live together. Often the parties agree who will continue to live in the marital residence. However, if the parties cannot agree and one party wants the other party to move out, then the Court can be requested to issue a Temporary Order which addresses this issue.

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