There are four types of divorce in Georgia.
The fastest and easiest way to divorce is with an uncontested divorce. Uncontested means that you and your spouse agree on how everything should be divided, including all of your things, bank accounts, real estate, cars, retirement accounts, debts, credit cards, etc. You have also settled all child support, child custody, and alimony issues.
If you and your spouse agree about everything before you file the divorce and have signed a Divorce Agreement, then a Georgia divorce can take as little as 31 days from the date of filing. Your costs will also be low.
If you and your spouse agree on most things but still have a few areas of disagreement or indecision, then you may need an attorney or a mediator to help with the final negotiations.
A contested divorce is when you and your spouse cannot agree on one or more of the issues in your divorce.
Alimony, child custody, and child support can be difficult to agree on, especially during a deteriorating relationship. Figuring out how to fairly divide assets, including retirement accounts, bank accounts, and debts can also be tricky, depending on each spouse’s conduct before or during the divorce.
With a contested divorce, attorneys, mediators, or a judge often settle the issues for you. Compared to their uncontested counterparts, contested divorces take more time and cost more to resolve, especially when they involve high-worth assets and/or child custody.
A collaborative divorce is a divorce option where both spouses agree not to go to court.
Third party, neutral financial professionals disclose the spouses’ assets and debts accurately and fairly. Therapists and custody experts help resolve any contested custody issues and steer the spouses towards a parenting plan that’s in the best interests of the child(ren).
A collaborative divorce takes place in a series of steps involving disclosures and meetings. Ultimately, it results in a signed final agreement that is submitted to the court and processed as a normal divorce.
A collaborative divorce is an excellent alternative for spouses who can’t agree on how to divorce but who want to avoid a nasty, contentious trial.
Arbitration is another of the options for divorce in Georgia without having a judge decide the issues. A good Marietta divorce attorney knows the biases that certain local judges may have. Biases might include a tendency for awarding custody to mothers, refusing to allow a 50/50 parenting schedule, or refusing to divide businesses or award alimony.
Instead of a judge resolving any contested issues, the spouses enter into an Arbitration Agreement. They empower an arbitrator to make the final decisions about how to fairly divide the marital estate and resolve any alimony, child custody, and child support issues.
There are several advantages of using an arbitrator compared to a judge. Most importantly, arbitration allows spouses to keep their documents, testimony, etc. private, which is invaluable in a high-asset situation. Second, arbitrators are usually available faster than a judge might be. Finally, the rules of evidence and procedure can be relaxed in an arbitration rather than very formal as in a trial.
The Marietta divorce attorneys at Bivek Brubaker & Prescott have a tremendous amount of experience with divorce in the Marietta, Georgia, area. One of our partners – not an associate – will work with you to answer your questions and make your divorce as smooth as possible. Please contact us or call 404-793-6530 to speak with one of our highly qualified Marietta divorce lawyers or to find out more about the types of divorce in Georgia.