Basic Costs Of Divorce
For those who are seeking to file for divorce in Georgia, especially those who which to proceed without the assistance of counsel, the first cost encountered will likely be the filing fee and service fee. Generally, the cost to file a Complaint for Divorce in Georgia ranges from $200.00 to $220.00. This fee must be paid to the Clerk of Superior Court in the county where the divorce case is initiated. In addition to this fee, a service fee must also be paid. This fee is the cost to have your spouse served with the divorce papers by the Sheriff’s department. In almost every county in Georgia, the service fee is around $50.00.
Residency Requirements In Georgia
To file a complaint for divorce in Georgia, one spouse must reside in the county where you intend to file for at least six months immediately before filing. Military personnel can file in the county where they hold permanent residency, even if stationed outside of Georgia at the time of filing.
Only one spouse must qualify for residency to file for divorce in Georgia. The residency of the other spouse is irrelevant. Once you file the complaint, you can move anywhere, though it is easier to remain in the county where the filing exists.
You’ll file the complaint in the Superior Court where you or your spouse currently reside. Because divorce laws are state-specific, you must prove residency. If you’re not a resident, but your spouse is, you can still file in the county where your spouse lives.
Suppose either party has not lived within a Georgia county at any point within the immediate six months before filing the complaint for divorce. In that case, the marriage is ineligible for divorce proceedings within the state of Georgia. If that’s the case, you must wait until you’ve gained residency or return to your former state to file.
Georgia Divorce Papers Online
In order to get your GA divorce documents filled out, you will need to have the following information on your hands:
- Your and your spouses full name and date of birth.
- Date and location of your marriage.
- Your and your spouses current address, as well as the address of all real property you own.
- Full names, dates of birth, and current address of your children.
- Information about your income, debt, insurance, and taxes.
- Workplace information both yours and spouses.
- Info about vehicles you both own, such as model, make, year, and VIN.
- SSN and drivers license number.
- Information about any previous court cases involving you or your children.
- Description of property you and your spouse own.
- Financial accounts information.
Recommended Reading: Finding Love After Divorce At 30
How Do I Begin A Georgia Divorce
A Georgia divorce begins with one of the spouses filing a Petition for Dissolution of Marriage, otherwise known as a Complaint with the appropriate Superior court. Dissolution of marriage is granted by a Superior court judge by way of a Final Judgement for Dissolution of Marriage. It is the judge signing the Final Judgement for Dissolution which is the Order that legally ends the marriage. In addition, the Final Judgment explains how property and debts are to be divided. If children are involved the Final Judgement for Dissolution of Marriage will incorporate a Parenting Plan that outlines the amount of shared time the child or children have with each parent.
Contested Vs Uncontested Divorce Costs
A contested divorce will cost more because one or both sides want to fight for what they want. You can expect to go to court, possibly a number of times, where your attorney’s fees will add up.
An uncontested divorce in Georgia tends to move faster and needs less time with an attorney, saving you money. This is sometimes called a “no-fault” divorce because you aren’t trying to prove your spouse did something wrong.
If both sides are willing to talk and negotiate together, an uncontested divorce case is the less expensive option, though it is still a good idea to work with a lawyer. Consider having a lawyer draft the divorce papers before filing them with the courts. Typically, lawyers charge their hourly rates for this service.
Read Also: Who Pays Rent During Divorce
Whats Special About Georgia Divorce Online
Our website is truly unique as it allows you to begin your uncontested divorce process 100% online and to completed your agreed divorce without having to visit the court. Simply answer questions online then mail your paperwork to the court for processing. Wait about three weeks and receive your court approved divorce. Its that simple!
Most important, unlike other websites the paperwork you receive via this website can be reviewed online by a duly licensed and experienced Georgia family law attorney. This extra precaution ensures you get professional, competent, and legally accurate assistance with your divorce paperwork.
Valid Grounds To Get Divorce In Georgia
Georgia isnt one of no-fault divorce states. Aside from irretrievably broken marriage, there are also many other ways to get divorced in this state. That gives divorcing couples a lot of options to choose from.
The following are legal grounds for divorce in Georgia:
- Irretrievably broken marriage
- Property distribution
Also Check: How To Fill Out Divorce Papers
Legal Separation Prior To Filing A Divorce In Georgia
Legal Separation in Georgia
In order to file a divorce in Georgia, you first have to be legally separated. But this does not mean that you or your spouse has to move out of the marital residence. Under Georgia law, you simply have to suspend marital relations with the intention to divorce. Parties can be legally separated while living in the same household. There is no requirement that there be a separation agreement, in writing or verbally, although an agreed or verifiable date is best. And there is no specific time period required, although at least 30 days is recommended. So, if you live in Georgia, you are legally separated if either spouse moves out, or moves into another bedroom, with the intention to file divorce.
In Blasingame v. Blasingame, 249 Ga. 791 , the Supreme Court noted: Marital separation means a suspension of marital relations between husband and wife without dissolution of the marital relationship. The suspended conjugal rights include the company, the cooperation, assistance, and intimacy of the other spouse in every conjugal way … It is not essential that the husband or wife should leave the marital homeplace separation can occur when one spouse moves into another room with the intent and purpose of suspending conjugal rights.
So, again, it is best to pick a clear date and stick to it. As this date can impact support payments, you will want to consult Atlanta Divorce Attorney Russell Hippe before making this decision.
How To File Divorce In Georgia
This article was co-authored by Clinton M. Sandvick, JD, PhD. Clinton M. Sandvick worked as a civil litigator in California for over 7 years. He received his JD from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 1998 and his PhD in American History from the University of Oregon in 2013.There are 9 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page.wikiHow marks an article as reader-approved once it receives enough positive feedback. In this case, 94% of readers who voted found the article helpful, earning it our reader-approved status. This article has been viewed 354,640 times.
Don’t Miss: Can I Get Alimony After Divorce Is Final
Finalizing Your Divorce In Georgia
Completing your divorce is the ultimate goal. However, reaching this goal can be tedious, time-consuming, and expensive unless you have the proper knowledge and a clear path to follow. As noted above, there may be multiple steps between filing your divorce and finalizing your divorce. The additional steps in between may be due to many factors such as your spouse not cooperating with you, or your spouse and you asking the court to make all the decisions for you.
Even in simple uncontested divorce cases finalizing your divorce can be a headache if your final decree of divorce is not properly drafted and found could be satisfactory and legally sufficient for the judge to sign off on it. Many people obtain the services of website companies or other non-attorney service providers to prepare their uncontested divorce documents. In Georgia many judges will not sign off on insufficient or poorly drafted Final Judgments. Because most people focus only on filing for divorce it is these website companies that exploit consumers. A careful review of such company websites reveals that they only guarantee their documents will be accepted for filing. But, as noted herein it is the final divorce decree that actually ends your marriage.
S For Divorce In Georgia
To initiate the divorce process in Georgia, residents of this state should follow several significant steps.Let’s dive deeper into this topic.
Grounds for Divorce
To initiate the divorce process, the plaintiff should file the divorce paperwork with the Clerk’s Office of the Superior Court of the Georgia county in which they or the served party reside.
In Georgia, the filing fees vary from county to county, but the average payment that most divorcing spouses need to release when filing divorce forms is $230.
Serving a Spouse
After the plaintiff files divorce forms, they are required to inform the other party that legal action has been taken against them.
Georgia law requires its residents to serve divorce papers in one of the following ways:
Finalizing a Divorce
In Georgia, there are two ways to finalize an uncontested divorce by a final hearing or by a Motion for Judgment on the Pleadings. The way divorce is finalized mainly depends on the judge assigned to the case.
Don’t Miss: How To Know When Divorce Is Right
Quick Facts For Filing For Divorce In Cobb County:
- Divorces in Cobb County must be filed in the Superior Court.
- In Cobb County, different paperwork needs to be filed depending on whether or not you have minor children. Their website offers the forms that are needed to file, including for those with minor children, and those without minor children
- The divorce packet of paperwork needs to be completed and submitted, along with the filing fee. The most recent filing fee for a divorce in Cobb County is $216.
- Divorces are either contested or uncontested .
- You are able to legally remarry after the court has issued a Final Judgment and Decree of Divorce.
- When filing for a divorce in Cobb County, you have two options. You can complete and file the paperwork yourself, or you can hire an attorney who will complete the paperwork and file it on your behalf, and provide you with representation.
When filing the paperwork for divorce in Cobb County, you must fill out every section accurately. The forms you will need to start the divorce include:
- Complaint for Divorce
There are additional forms that may be necessary, depending on your personal situation. These include:
- Notice of Lis Pendens
- Affidavit of Poverty and Order of Poverty
- Child Support Worksheet
Can Divorce Fees Be Waived In Georgia
If you are not able to afford to pay the filing fees for a divorce in Georgia, you can file an Affidavit of Indigence or a Poverty Affidavit asking the court to waive the mandatory filing fee and other associated court costs.
You will need to show proof of your income to ensure that you meet qualifications for the waiver to be granted. Most counties will only grant the waiver if you are representing yourself in the divorce or are being represented by a pro bono attorney.
Don’t Miss: Free Consultation Lawyers For Divorce
Online Divorce In Georgia
Online divorce services are an increasingly popular way for those looking to complete their divorces cheaply. Online services are a method of preparing divorce documents thats much less expensive than going through the traditional route of using an attorney.
In essence, online divorce services are similar to platforms like TurboTax that help you complete your tax forms efficiently.
Rather than reading through complicated and unclear legal language, you can answer questions in simple English about your family, financial, and relationship situation.
Then, your online divorce software will output out the completed documents ready for you to file with the courts. In fact, some online services will even take care of it for you, so you dont have to handle court proceedings.
So, rather than going through all the difficulty and confusion of filling out your divorce forms yourself, the online platform will guide you through the process in an easy-to-understand way. Not only that, but you can also save a lot of money while bringing this chapter of your life to an end.
How Does Divorce Work In Georgia
Georgia divorce laws require at least one spouse to be a resident of the state for 6 months. Divorce in Georgia is no-fault based, and the most common ground is irreconcilable differences, meaning the parties simply cannot get along and their marriage is at an end. Other grounds for divorce in Georgia include adultery, habitual intoxication and abandonment. Georgia courts require a 30-day waiting period after filing for divorce in order to allow for the couple to possibly reconcile.
Also Check: How Long Do You Have To Pay Alimony
Grounds For Divorce In Georgia
Georgia recognizes two types of grounds for divorce: no-fault and fault. Because of the no-fault option, you can file and obtain a divorce without any proof of wrongdoing. There are 13 grounds for divorce allowed in Georgia:
- Being married to someone too close in kinshipOCGA § 19-3-3 states that you cannot marry if you have any of the following relationships:
- Father and daughter or step-daughter
- Mother and son or step-son
- Brother and sister, either whole or half-blood
- Grandparent and grandchild
- Aunt and nephew
- Uncle and niece
Contested Vs Uncontested Divorce In Georgia
The process of filing for divorce in Georgia will depend on if your case is uncontested or contested. Uncontested means more than you and your spouse both agree to the divorce. In an uncontested divorce, you and your spouse have worked out, or are able to work out, all of the issues involved such as division of marital property, child custody and support, and alimony.
If you and your spouse disagree on any of these issues and need the court to intervene, it is called a contested divorce. A contested divorce almost always takes more time and costs more money to resolve because you need assistance from the court and other professionals such as lawyers and mediators.
If both spouses agree on the terms of the divorce, then it may be granted in as quickly as a month or so. However, there is a 31-day mandatory waiting period between the filing of the divorce and the date a Final Order and Decree of Divorce may be granted. A Georgia divorce can take several months to a couple of years when the terms are disputed.
One thing that’s important to remember is that a divorce may start out as uncontested and become contested, especially when it comes to working out details like a specific parenting plan or the amount of alimony to be paid. A divorce can also start out contested and then become uncontested through successful negotiations, mediation, or other out-of-court settlement methods.
Don’t Miss: How Does Alimony Work In Texas
Important Information You Need To Gather
There are many complicated issues in divorce that you will need to be prepared for. Getting organized early on and having the documents you need at your fingertips will make the entire process a little bit less daunting.
It will also save you time and money, while helping to expedite the divorce process.
For a better understanding of what documents youll need, weve put together this Divorce Information Checklist. Its a great resource as you begin the tedious task of pulling together your financial documentation.
How Do I Prove Fault For Divorce In Georgia
Georgia is a no fault state. This means that you do not have to prove fault. If you are electing to proceed on a fault basis, such as adultery, the standard of proof is by a preponderance of the evidence. This means you must show that it is more likely than not that your spouse is guilty of adultery and that the affair was the cause of the dissolution of the marriage.
Recommended Reading: How To Avoid Paying Alimony In Virginia
S For Filing A Divorce In Georgia
Below are the eight basic steps you need to take to get an uncontested marriage dissolution in Georgia:
Note that the Georgia uncontested divorce process may slightly vary depending on the county where you file and your specific case.
Same State Different Addresses
You do not have to remain at the same address to fulfill your residency requirement. You can move anywhere within the state from which you are filing. The forms do not require you to list all addressees, but you should be prepared to prove where you lived during the separation in the final hearing.
Recommended Reading: New York State Council On Divorce Mediation