Do I need an attorney to file for divorce in Georgia?
Although you can file your own divorce, if you do not understand all of the issues and procedures you could risk unwanted consequences that cannot later be changed. An attorney can recognize these issues and knows the legal procedures that can be used to address these issues.
How much will a divorce cost?
If the divorce is contested, there is generally no way to predict the total cost. If you understand the procedures and quickly respond to your attorney’s requests for action, you can control the fees. And if you and your spouse can agree on all issues, an uncontested divorce is much less expensive.
Can I get my spouse to pay the attorney’s fees?
Generally, each party must initially pay their attorney’s fees in a contested divorce. Each side usually asks for the other side to pay the attorney’s fees. The Court can award attorney’s fees based on the circumstances in your case at any hearing. If the matter is uncontested, you and your spouse must agree on how the fees will be paid.
How long will it take for the divorce to be granted?
If the parties agree on all of the issues, an uncontested divorce can be granted by the Court in a little over a month. On the other hand, if you cannot agree on all issues, the divorce can take several months or years depending on the issues in dispute.
What are the issues involved in a divorce?
Divorce law can be complex and involve many issues depending on your particular circumstances. However, generally the issues are: division of assets, division of debts, custody, visitation, child support, alimony, and attorney’s fees.
How does the Court decide child custody?
The Court uses the best interest of the child standard. The Court has many options available depending on the circumstances of the parents and the child. It is always best if you and your spouse can agree on custody issues. But the Court will decide if the two of you cannot agree.
Can I get alimony?
There is no set schedule for alimony in Georgia. It is completely dependent on the facts of your case. The Court will consider many things in determining (a) whether to award alimony, (b) how much alimony to award, and (c) how many months/years of alimony to award.
How does the Court decide a child support amount?
Georgia uses an income share model for child support. The factors considered are each party’s gross income (before taxes), medical, dental and vision insurance premiums for the child; daycare expenses for the child; educational expenses for the child, extraordinary medical expenses for the child; extracurricular activities for the child; parenting time; and any recognized reasons to deviate from the presumptive amount (the amount the Court presumes is correct). So it is very important to have proof of all of these items.
How can I get the child support amount changed?
Child support can be changed in a modification action if there has been a substantial change in circumstances. Common changes would include: a significant change in one or both parent’s income; a significant change in one or both parent’s financial situation; a significant change in the child’s needs; or a change in custody.
Can my new spouse adopt my child?
This depends on the specific circumstances of your situation. Factors to be considered include (a) whether the child’s biological parent will agree, (b) the extent of the biological parent’s involvement with the child, (c) the support paid by the biological parent, (d) the best interest of the child, and (e) the child’s wish if they are over the age of 14.
How do I make the other person follow the Court order?
The Court has the power to enforce its orders. If the other person can follow the court order but willfully refuses to do so, you can file a contempt action. It is best if you can prove that you tried (in a reasonable way) to get them to do what they are supposed to do before you file a contempt action.
If you have any other questions about family law matters, please contact us at 678 586 3442 to schedule a free consultation.