The decision to end your marriage is often a long and difficult one. Once you finally know that it is time to get a divorce, you may want to resolve the situation as quickly as possible. Couples who have married a short length of time and don’t have children are more likely to have an easier and faster resolution than couples who have been married a long time and have children. Before you can file for divorce, you must make sure you meet the requirements for a Georgia divorce.
Requirements for Divorce in Georgia
You must meet several requirements in order to file for divorce in Georgia. At least one spouse must have been a resident of Georgia for at least six months before filing for divorce. You must file for divorce in the county in which you reside. Once your spouse receives divorce papers, he or she has 30 days to respond, if living in Georgia. If your spouse lives outside the state, the time period extends to 60 days, and if outside the country, 90 days. Therefore, the shortest length of time to get a final hearing for divorce is 31 days from the date of service.
Generally, most divorces average a minimum of 45 days or longer. In some cases, where couples cannot agree, the divorce can drag out for months or even years. It is best to discuss the situation with your Carrollton divorce attorney. Your lawyer will provide you with guidance throughout the process and try to ensure that you receive a fair settlement while completing the divorce in a timely manner.
Contested and Uncontested Divorces
A contested divorce is one in which one party disagrees with the settlement terms or with the divorce. An uncontested divorce means that both spouses agree to the general terms of the divorce settlement. In general, an uncontested divorce is much simpler and therefore takes less time to complete than a divorce that is contested.
Georgia allows for no-fault and faults divorce. A no-fault divorce is one in which the marriage is irretrievably broken. It does not require you to place blame or fault on one or the other party. In Georgia, there are numerous grounds for divorce, such as adultery, imprisonment, desertion, and many others. A no-fault divorce will most likely be easier to resolve and take less time than a divorce where grounds are utilized.
How to Ensure a Smooth Divorce Process
There are several things you can do to ensure a smooth and speedy divorce process. Discuss the settlement terms of the divorce with your spouse and come to an agreement. The sooner you can agree on the terms of the divorce, the faster and easier the divorce process will likely be. Settlement terms include division of assets and distribution of debts, alimony, child custody, child visitation, and child support. A prenuptial agreement addresses these issues and provides guidance in case of a divorce.
If you realize that you have some issues in dispute, discuss the matter with your Carrollton family law attorney as soon as possible. Sometimes your attorney will iron out some of these disputes with your spouse’s attorney to resolve the matter satisfactorily. In some cases, you and your spouse may benefit from mediation.
Divorce can be a stressful and challenging time in your life. You can make the process as easy as possible with help from an experienced legal team. Contact Moffitt Law, LLC, to schedule a case consultation.
Tyler Moffitt is a Family Law and Criminal Defense Attorney who practices Carrollton, LaGrange, and Columbus, GA. He graduated from John Marshall Law School, and has been practicing for several years now. Tyler Moffitt takes great honor in defending the accused. Learn more about his experience by clicking here.