Atlanta Marriage Dissolution Attorneys
To file for divorce in Georgia, the divorce process beings when one spouse files a Petition for Dissolution of Marriage and serves a copy of the petition to the other spouse. To be able to file a Petition for Dissolution of Marriage, you or your spouse must be a resident of Illinois or stationed as a military service member in Illinois for at least 90 days before filing the petition. If you or your spouse currently reside in two different countries, the Petition for Dissolution of Marriage may be filed in either country.
The Petition for Dissolution of Marriage will contain specific information about you and your spouse, your requested divorce, and basic information, like names and addresses. The bulk of the petition will be about the grounds for filing for divorce. Georgia allows for its residents to file a fault or no-fault divorce. However, the issue of fault will not be relevant to the determination of custody, visitation, property allocation, and spousal support.
Common Grounds for Fault Divorce in Georgia
For a Petition for Dissolution of Marriage on no-fault grounds, the spouses must agree that irreconcilable differences have made their marriage irreparable. Additionally, the spouses must live apart from each other for a continuous period more than two years. However, this separation period may be reduced to only six months if both spouses agree to waive the requirement. For a Petition for Dissolution of Marriage to be based on fault, the petition must also state that a spouse has committed one of the nine separate grounds for divorce allowed by Georgia law. The spouse petitioning for divorce is expected to provide evidence to show the grounds stated in the petition. Georgia allows for the following grounds for fault divorce:
- Adultery committed during marriage
- Spouse abandonment for a period of at least one year
- Habitual intoxication for at least two years
- A confirmed addiction to drugs for at least two years
- Physical or mental cruelty and abuse
- Conviction of a felony
- The other spouse infected the petitioner with a sexually transmitted infection (STI)
In addition to filing a Petition for Dissolution of Marriage, the petitioner must also file a Judgment for Dissolution of Marriage form. The court will use this form to finalize the divorce proceedings. Depending on the circumstances of the spouses, the court may require additional documents to be filed with the petition. The court may require filing of a verification statement, a financial disclosure statement, and a waiver of the two-year separation if it is a no-fault divorce. After the petition is properly filed, the other spouse must be notified through proper service of a copy of the petition. The petitioner can serve the other spouse, but it is preferred that the petitioner have a member of the Sheriff’s office or a private process server to serve the other spouse. If the other spouse already has an attorney, you may want to serve the attorney a copy of the Petition for Dissolution of Marriage instead of the other spouse.
Reliable, Experienced Divorce Lawyers
Dissolving your marriage is an emotional and complex decision. You may have no idea how to divorce your spouse or how the divorce proceedings will turn out. The Georgia divorce attorneys at Bushnell & Drye have the knowledge and experience to protect and represent your interests throughout the divorce proceedings. Our legal team will work with you to win a positive outcome for you. To schedule a consultation and speak to our experienced Georgia divorce attorneys.