Getting a divorce is one of the most stressful things you’ll go through in your lifetime. If you and your spouse disagree on anything, the process can be time-consuming, costly, and overwhelming. The good news is that you don’t have to navigate this trying time on your own. The Douglas County divorce lawyers at Bardley McKnight Law are here to help you fight for what’s best for you and your family.
Since 2017, Bardley McKnight Law has been a trusted advocate and resource for clients caught up in emotionally-trying divorce disputes. As leaders in family law litigation in Georgia, our award-winning trial attorneys have proven the ability to help clients protect what’s most important to them during the divorce process.
Today, we’re here to help you fight for your children, your assets, and your future. Don’t hesitate to put our extensive experience and resources to work for you. Contact our Douglas County, Georgia, law office for help or call (470) 308-5409.
How Bardley McKnight Law Can Make a Difference in Your Douglas County, GA Divorce Case
Even if you and your spouse see eye-to-eye on some issues, it’s important to enlist the help of a qualified Douglas County family law attorney. The terms of your divorce are binding, and they’ll have a fundamental impact on your life for years to come. That means you’ll have one opportunity to negotiate child support, child custody, the allocation and distribution of marital property, and other important aspects of your split.
At Bardley McKnight Law, we’ve dedicated our careers to helping our clients work through these challenging issues and achieve results that work best for them.
Here are just a few of the reasons why clients continually turn to us for help navigating divorces in Douglas County, GA:
- We embrace strategies that focus on positivity and working toward amicable, mutually agreeable results so that relationships aren’t unnecessarily destroyed during a divorce
- Our attorneys provide personalized, compassionate legal representation that focuses on developing a unique strategy based on the specific issues at hand
- Our top-rated Georgia family law attorneys have over 40 years of combined experience to serve our clients better
- We intentionally limit the number of cases we handle at once so that every client gets the time and attention they deserve
We can make a difference when you let us help you navigate your divorce, but you don’t have to take our word for it. Our law firm has over 100 reviews on Google, averaging nearly a perfect 5.0, highlighting the ways in which we’ve positively impacted our clients’ lives.
Contact us to discuss your case and learn more about how we can help.
Georgia Divorce Process Overview
Divorce is different in every state. It’s essential to understand how Georgia’s divorce laws can and will affect your divorce. Here’s what you need to know.
What Is a Divorce?
Divorce is a legal process through which a marriage is dissolved. During the divorce process, spouses must negotiate several terms – including who gets custody of the children (and when), how marital assets will be divided, and if monetary support will be paid after the split.
A petition for divorce can only be finalized once the terms of the dissolution are resolved – either by the spouses or through an order of the court.
Does Georgia Have a Waiting Period For Divorce?
Yes. Georgia has a 30-day waiting period once divorce papers are filed and served.
This gives both spouses the time and opportunity to reflect on their decision to split up before the matter formally moves before a Douglas County court.
What Are the Residency Requirements for Divorces in Georgia?
You can file for a divorce in Georgia if you and/or your spouse have lived in the state for at least six months.
If you don’t satisfy the residency requirements, you’ll either have to wait until you or your spouse have lived in the state for six months or file in another jurisdiction.
What Are the Grounds For Divorce in Georgia?
There are actually 13 different grounds for divorce in the state of Georgia.
As listed in O.C.G.A. 19-5-3, these include:
- Marriage between related individuals
- Mental incapacity at the time of marriage
- Impotency at the time of marriage
- Force, menace, duress, or fraud to get married
- Pregnancy by someone other than the husband at the time of the marriage
- Willful and continue desertion for at least one year
- Conviction for a crime involving moral turpitude resulting in imprisonment for at least two years
- Habitual intoxication
- Cruel treatment causing a reasonable apprehension of danger to health, limb, or life
- Incurable mental illness
- Habitual drug addiction
- Irretrievably broken marriage
So, Georgia has both fault-based and no-fault divorces. In a no-fault divorce, irreconcilable differences must be cited.
Ready To Handle All Aspects of Your Douglas County Divorce
Divorce can be complicated, especially for couples who have been together for a long time and share children together. Figuring out how to dissolve a union and allow both spouses to move forward can be challenging, especially when there are kids involved.
At Bardley McKnight Law, our Douglas County divorce attorneys are ready to help you identify your goals and work toward securing the best results for your family.
Married parents enjoy equal rights to their children. This includes the right to make decisions about a child’s health, wellness, and education, as well as the right to be present and involved in their child’s life.
When parents split up, it becomes necessary to determine what a parent’s role in their child’s life will look like after the split is finalized.
While Georgia prefers to keep both parents involved in a child’s life, the best interests of the child will always prevail.
When considering the child’s best interests, a court will consider:
- Which parent is primarily responsible for taking care of the child on a daily basis
- The relationship the child has with each of their parents
- A parent’s mental health
- A parent’s history of substance abuse, criminal activity, and/or domestic violence
- The child’s age and gender
- Whether or not the child has siblings
Children who are at least 11 years old can potentially have a say in which parent they live with after a divorce. A judge will take a child’s testimony into consideration when making child custody determinations.
Whether you want sole custody of your child or need help negotiating a time-sharing plan with your soon-to-be ex, our law firm can help.
Child support is paid by the non-custodial parent to help ensure that children are taken care of after a divorce.
When determining child support, courts will consider:
- The income of both parents
- Health insurance obligations
- Alimony paid to the custodial parent
- Mortgage obligations
- Extraordinary costs related to healthcare or education
- The actual time the non-custodial parent spends with their child
Both parents are ultimately responsible for taking care of their children financially. However, an additional requirement is often imposed on the non-custodial parent, especially if they earn a significantly higher income.
Our divorce attorneys in Douglas County will help you fight to negotiate child support terms that ensure your children receive the financial assistance they need and deserve as they grow. We can help you petition the court for support, fight to enforce an existing order, or ask for support obligations to be modified due to changes in life circumstances.
Georgia has equitable division laws for divorcing spouses. This means that marital property (and debts) is divided fairly, which may or not not be equal.
Before property can be divided, it’s necessary to determine if the property is owned jointly or independently. Typically, property owned individually by each spouse before marriage will not be subject to allocation. On the other hand, property – including income, benefits, and debts – obtained after marriage will be considered the property of both spouses, regardless of who bought or earned it.
Our attorneys will conduct a full accounting of your marital property and work with financial experts and forensic accountants to ensure that all assets and debts are identified and valued properly. We’ll help you identify the assets you’re most interested in keeping and those that you can live with giving to your spouse. If there are disputes over certain assets, our masterful negotiators will help you and your spouse find an amicable solution and/or utilize alternative dispute resolution (ADR) strategies to achieve a positive result.
When you live together, you share your income and expenses. It doesn’t matter much if you or your spouse earns more money. However, when you split up, things change. Georgia wants both spouses to be able to maintain their standard of living after a divorce. This can be difficult if one spouse earns substantially more than the other. To help the lesser-earning spouse get back on their feet, Georgia law permits spousal support payments.
Depending on the circumstances, spousal support (or alimony) can be temporary or permanent in nature. Courts will take many factors into consideration when deciding on a request for alimony, including both spouses’ incomes and earning potential and whether one spouse left the workforce to raise a family and/or support the other spouse’s career.
Our spousal support attorneys in Douglas County can help you petition for alimony or fight back against requests that you pay support for the foreseeable future.
Call Our Experienced Douglas County Divorce Lawyers for Help Today
You don’t have to go through your divorce on your own. Even if you and your spouse want an uncontested divorce, it can be helpful to have a legal advocate helping you along the way.
At Bardley McKnight Law, our Douglas County divorce lawyers have 40+ years of combined experience helping clients work through these delicate and intimate legal matters. We’re experienced litigators who will strive to find an amicable solution to your disputes but won’t hesitate to fight for you aggressively when the time comes.
Contact us to learn more about working with our family law firm in Douglas County, GA. We’re always available to provide the help you need.