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Questions about Divorce?

For over 28 years, with over 10,000 cases experience, the Stearns Montgomery & Proctor Georgia attorneys have seen it all and we know that you will have questions about the divorce process. There are lots of pitfalls and other obstacles that can hinder your divorce case. Being informed and organized can help the process become less convoluted. See the frequently asked questions below or schedule a consult with a Stearns Montgomery & Proctor attorney.

Will my financial situation change after the divorce?

We often find that many people—especially spouses who are homemakers relying on a primary income earner—do not understand their financial situation or the post-divorce budget they will need to meet their desired standard of living. People often overlook budget and finance issues in the emotion of a divorce and are more likely to focus on issues such as child custody. Ideally, you should collect financial information as quickly as possible. If you are the spouse filing for divorce, you should collect information before you file for a divorce. However, even if you sense that a divorce may happen to you, you may be blindsided by a divorce and will need to collect complete financial information during the divorce proceedings. Eventually, it is recommended that you put together a structured list in better determining your Georgia divorce case cost and budget.

How does the Georgia Divorce Process Work?

Before you file for a divorce in Georgia, you and your spouse must be considered separated in a legal sense. Even if you live in the same house with your spouse, you can still be considered separated as long as you are not sharing the same bedroom with your spouse, having a sexual relationship with your spouse or intending to continue a marital relationship with your spouse. Once it is agreed that divorce between you and your spouse is the next course of action, filing a formal document such as a “complaint” is the next step. Assuming you are the one to initiate the divorce, you are the plaintiff or petitioner. However, if you receive a divorce complaint, you are the defendant or respondent.

Upon the complaint filing, it is important you collect all relevant divorce information. An in-depth ‘Discovery’ process will allow you and your attorney to collect relevant information necessary in developing your case.

Once your case has been adequately developed, you and your attorney can discuss if mediation is appropriate. If the parties are not able to come to a negotiated settlement, and a trial in your case is the best route, then your attorney will present your case to a judge or jury. If children are involved, only a judge, after hearing both sides to the case, determines final questions of child custody and visitation. A judge or jury will determine the remaining issues in the matter.

What are the Grounds for Divorce in Georgia?

There are thirteen statutory grounds for a divorce in Georgia. The grounds include adultery, desertion, cruel treatment, habitual intoxication and habitual drug addiction. There are twelve fault grounds and one no fault ground, simply stating that the marriage is irretrievably broken. While it is always better to settle your case, litigation is often the only course of action.

How is Property Equity Divided in a Georgia Divorce Case?

Several factors determine how marital property equity is equitably divided in a Georgia Divorce case. In this process, disclosing all information concerning assets and debts is required to determine an equitable, or fair, outcome. Once a division of property is made part of the judgment, it may be enforced just as any other part of the judgment may be enforced. Generally, the recipient who gains custodial rights of the children, if any, will stay in the marital residence, but it is important to consider the financial impact of maintaining the marital residence as well as other factors that may affect such an outcome.

How does Affair Impact a Georgia Divorce Case?

Any claim of adultery must be substantiated. Infidelity, with the aid of effective counsel, may have significant impact on the outcome of the case making it essential and of vital importance to the overall case strategy. If the opposing party is requesting alimony, note that adultery on their part may bar an award of alimony to them. The law also provides that fault can be a factor in deciding what is fair for the final property distribution.
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What happens Post Divorce?

Once the final Georgia Court Order is determined and executed, you must adhere to the court’s final decision. If you do not comply with the court order you could face contempt charges. Debtors prison may have been banned at the time of the revolution, yet Court’s may enforce an order of child support, or other family law provisions, by sending you to jail until you comply or purge the contempt. Additionally, there is potential opportunity to modify provisions of your divorce agreement. Often, cases that involve children and child custody go through divorce order modifications. More information on Georgia Court Order Modification can be found here: What do I do after a divorce?

What type of Counseling is Right for Me?

Counseling and therapy is a useful tool for many individuals facing everyday challenges or for those who are dealing with a major life event or trauma. Client’s often think it will hurt their case to seek counseling. That is simply not true. Counseling or therapy is a great option for individuals who are going through a divorce , experiencing marital problems, those who are unsure about whether they want to make their marriage work, and even for children who have parents going through a divorce. Once someone decides that they want or need to seek assistance from a counselor or therapist, they often don't know where to turn. Here are several options for Georgia Divorce Counseling and Therapy:
What Type of Counseling is Right for Me?

Have additional questions about Georgia Divorce? Please call us today at (678) 971-3413 or schedule a consultation to get your important questions answered.

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