Atlanta Divorce Lawyers
Divorce Lawyers Atlanta: Child Support, Child
Custody, Divorce Alimony, Equitable Division, Divorce Procedure
There is a lot of confusion and misconceptions about the entire
divorce process. While everyone understands that a divorce ends a
marriage, very few people understand the basic concepts that are in
place when seeking a divorce. From a big picture point of view, in
Atlanta, Georgia, a divorce really is as simple as making determinations
involving four primary areas. These areas, along with links to further
information about each area, are listed below.
Equitable division of property - This part of the divorce
process focuses on trying to obtain a fair division of marital
assets between the parties. Several key items that are considered as
part of this process are what marital property is and how it should
Child custody and visitation - This item obviously decides who
should have custody of any minor children and what the visitation
time should be for the non-custodial parent. Less obvious, this
section also involves how decisions regarding a child's health,
education, extra-curricular, and religious decisions are made.
Child support - Child support is the legally required amount of
money the non-custodial parent must pay to the custodial parent to
help with their child(ren)'s financial needs.
Alimony - Alimony is the amount of money that one parent must
pay to the other parent to financially help that parent with their
transition at the end of the marriage. There are several forms of
alimony that exist and the amount and length of alimony is usually
dependent upon the basic concept of needs of one party versus the
ability of the other party to pay.
Each of these four concepts can be fairly complex, in and of
themselves, which is why it is recommended that the parties seek the
advice of an experienced divorce attorney, like those at Meriwether &
Tharp, LLC, to help guide them through these decisions and present them
with as many options as possible for trying to find mutually agreeable
ways of handling these complicated and life altering decisions.
Procedurally, a divorce starts with the filing of a
complaint which is then served upon the other spouse. The spouse that
was served with the notice of the divorce has thirty (30) days to a
response. Once the answer is filed, the parties begin what is generally
known as the discovery period where each party has the ability to ask
written and oral questions to the other spouse (as well as third
parties) about information related to the divorce action. Also, the
discovery period allows each spouse to request to see various documents
that are in the possession of the other spouse or third parties.
At the conclusion of the discovery process, the Court hears various
motions filed by the parties and schedules the case for a final trial
(with or without a jury). Once the final trial occurs, the court (or
jury as appropriate) then makes a final ruling addressing each of four
major areas listed above. Of course, at any point along the way, the
parties are free to try and decide any or all of the issues themselves,
without being told by a judge or jury how they should handle their
lives, and there are various alternative dispute resolution mechanisms
in place, such as mediation and arbitration, to help the parties
amicably resolve their differences.
You can rely on Meriwether & Tharp to guide you through difficult
divorce and family law situations. To speak to a member of our team, you
can call our office or e-mail us to schedule an appointment to meet with
someone on our family law team.
Meriwether & Tharp, LLC
11475 Great Oaks Way
Alpharetta, Georgia 30022
P: 678-879-9000 / F: 678-879-9001
Our lawyers are dedicated to providing excellent legal services
for divorce, child support and child custody issues in the Atlanta,
Georgia area, including: Acworth, Alpharetta, Austell, Avondale
Estates, Ball Ground, Buford, Canton, Chamblee, Cherokee, Cobb,
Cumming, Dacula, Decatur, DeKalb, Doraville, Duluth, Dunwoody,
Forsyth, Fulton, Gainesville, Gwinnett, Hall, Johns Creek, Kennesaw,
Lawrenceville, Lilburn, Lithonia, Marietta, Milton, Norcross, Powder
Springs, Roswell, Sandy Springs, Smyrna, Snellville, Stone Mountain,
Suwanee, and Woodstock.
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