Navigating Divorce in Georgia: Protecting Your Family and Finances
Facing a divorce can feel overwhelming and sometimes downright terrifying. At Vayman & Teitelbaum, P.C., our goal is to help you get through your divorce and make the process feel less stressful. We serve residents from the center of Atlanta all the way to Alpharetta, we’re our main location is based. Regardless of which type of divorce option suits you best, our experienced Georgia divorce attorneys can help you achieve the outcomes you’re hoping for and help you be confident that both your family and your finances are protected during the divorce process.
Hiring the Right Alpharetta, Georgia Divorce Attorney
The attorney you choose to represent you in your divorce is crucial because they can make or break your case. Not all lawyers are the same and not all lawyers are qualified to handle divorce cases. It’s important to hire an experienced attorney that specializes in divorce and family law and has a strong track record handling divorce cases in Georgia. They should be familiar with the judges in your county and know the legal process like the back of their hand. Additionally they should have strong communication skills so they can keep you informed on your case.
You should feel confident in the Georgia divorce attorney you choose to represent you. A good rule of thumb is to imagine you weren’t able to advocate for yourself, you should feel confident enough in your attorney to represent your best interests in your absence. If for any reason you don’t feel that level of confidence in your attorney, you need to find a different divorce attorney in Georgia to handle your case.
Grounds for Divorce in Atlanta, Georgia
There are 13 grounds for divorce in the state of Georgia:
- Intermarriage by persons within the prohibited degrees of kinship
- Mental incapacity at the time of the marriage
- Impotency at the time of the marriage
- Force, menace, duress, or fraud in obtaining the marriage
- Pregnancy of the wife by a man other than the husband, at the time of the marriage, unknown to the husband
- Adultery in either party after marriage
- Willful and continued desertion by either party for one year
- The conviction of either party for an offense involving moral turpitude and sentence to confinement for more than one year, or hard labor
- Habitual intoxication or addiction to drugs or narcotic substances
- Cruel treatment toward either party of the marriage or the other’s child, including an attempt to cause bodily harm
- Incurable mental illness
- Living separately under a decree of separate maintenance or a written separation agreement for at least one year
- Irretrievable breakdown of the marriage, which means that the marriage is broken beyond repair and there is no chance of reconciliation.
It’s important to note that Georgia is a no-fault state, meaning that you do not need to prove fault in order to obtain a divorce. If a couple is living separately and both parties agree to the divorce, it can be granted on the grounds of “irretrievable breakdown of the marriage.”
Filing for Divorce in Georgia
In order to file for divorce in Georgia, there must be (1) a valid marriage and (2) residence in Georgia by one of the parties for at least six months prior to filing for divorce.
The spouses do not need to be in a state of physical or legal separation in order to file for divorce, but Georgia courts do require that the parties are in an actual state of separation. A husband and wife can be in an actual state of separation and still live in the same house. In fact, there are situations where the couple remains in the same house throughout some or all of the divorce proceedings.
The 2 Main Types of Divorce
The state of Georgia offers two types of divorce, uncontested divorce, and contested divorce. In an uncontested divorce, both parties agree on all issues, and there is no need to take the divorce to trial. In a contested divorce, the parties cannot come to an agreement on all issues; therefore a judge is needed to help reach an agreement.
In every divorce case, whether contested or uncontested, four main issues need to be resolved:
- Property division, particularly for high-asset couples.
- Custody and visitation of any children.
- Child support payments.
- Spousal support payments.
Child support in Georgia is primarily determined by child custody and parental income and follows a specific formula. However, spousal support is more flexible, as the court has the discretion to determine the amount, within certain limits, based on the circumstances of the case. Our lawyers can advise you on how the facts of your case may impact the court’s decision, including the possibility of awarding additional marital property or title to the family home as a lump sum for alimony instead of monthly payments.
At Vayman & Teitelbaum, P.C., we take a client-centered approach to divorce cases. Our Alpharetta divorce attorneys use their legal expertise, strategic thinking, and practicality to create effective solutions for our clients. Contact our firm to discover how our dedication to client service can benefit you during your case.