Georgia Georgia

Divorce Law Guide

Georgia Divorce Overview

Residency Requirement
Living Separate & Apart
Processing Time
Filing Fee
6 months
210 days

The facts about divorce in Georgia

Divorce, or dissolution of marriage, is the legal process of severing a marriage contract, which is overseen by a court of law in the state in which one or both of the divorcing spouses live. The process for getting a divorce and acceptible grounds for divorce vary from state to state.

In Georgia, a divorce can be completed on average in a minimum of 210 days, with court fees of $218.00. The state has divorce residency requirements that require the spouse filing for the divorce to have lived in Georgia for a minimum of six months.

On this page, you can learn about Georgia's grounds for divorce, how the divorce process works, and about other parts of the divorce process, such as Georgia alimony calculation, the property division process and more.

Georgia Divorce Law Summary

What are the Grounds for Divorce?

Georgia is a state that has both the fault and no fault divorce and once the spouses have met their six months residency requirement can file within their local county court district. No-fault divorces are those where the marriage is no longer workable and will issue a divorce after 30 days giving time for the other spouse to respond.

The fault option requires proof of one of the following state recognized reasons:

1) Intermarriage by persons within the prohibited degrees of consanguinity or affinity

2) Mental incapacity at the time of the marriage

3) Impotency at the time of the marriage

4) Force, menace, duress, or fraud in obtaining the marriage

5) Pregnancy of the wife by a man other than the husband, at the time of the marriage, unknown to the husband

6) Adultery in either of the parties after marriage

7) Willful and continued desertion by either of the parties for the term of one year

8) The conviction of either party for an offense involving moral turpitude, under which he is sentenced to imprisonment in a penal institution for a term of two years or longer

9) Habitual intoxication

10) Cruel treatment, which shall consist of the willful infliction of pain, bodily or mental, upon the complaining party, such as reasonably justifies apprehension of danger to life, limb, or health

11) Incurable mental illness

12) Habitual drug addiction.

Evidence will need to be provided in cases like this, and so it is critical that a lawyer is consulted to know what and what is not considered evidence depending on the type of fault divorce someone is going for.

Georgia Divorce Guide - Frequently Asked Questions

In state of Georgia a number of factors are taken into account when ending a marriage.

1. Georgia Grounds for Divorce FAQ

Is Georgia a no-fault divorce state?

Georgia allows no-fault divorces, which means that a divorce is granted without establishing the fault of either spouse for causing the divorce. Grounds for a no-fault divorce in Georgia may be "irreconcilable differences", or similar grounds.

Does Georgia allow at-fault divorces?

In addition to no-fault grounds for divorce, Georgia is a fault divorce state which provides the option to file for a traditional at-fault divorce. Suing for an at-fault divorce alleges that the filer's spouse is the cause of the divorce due to engaging in one of Georgia's at-fault divorce grounds, such as adultery, abuse, or insanity.

In some cases, an at-fault divorce is pursued because it can entitle the suing spouse to a greater share of marital property or even punitive alimony payments if their partner's fault is proven. If their spouse contests these allegations, they may be challenged in court, which can lead to a lengthy and expensive legal process.

Does the state of Georgia allow incompatibility as grounds for divorce?

Yes, Georgia does allow incompatibility to be used as grounds for having a divorce.

Can you get a divorce in Georgia for living separate and apart?

In divorce law, "living seperate and apart" refers to married spouses who are living separate from each other, not engaging in a traditional marital relationship, and do not intend to repair the marriage.

Georgia does not allow a divorce to be granted solely on the grounds of living seperate and apart from your spouse. You must instead file for divorce under one of Georgia's accepted grounds for divorce.

2. Georgia Divorce Process FAQ

Does state of Georgia allow legal separation?

Legal separation (otherwise known as "judicial separation") is a legal process that enables spouses to be de facto separated while remaining legally married.

Georgia does not grant judicial separation orders to married couples who wishes to live separately, so a divorce petition should be pursued instead.

What's the difference between a divorce and an annulment in Georgia?

While a divorce is the process of exiting a legally valid marriage, an annulment is the process of rendering a marriage null and void. An annulment makes it legally as if a marriage never took place to begin with.

Generally, annulment is used to conclude a marriage that should not have been legally recognized in the first place, such as a marriage where one of the spouses was unable to consent (by virtue of being underage, due to mental incapacity, or even intoxication), a marriage that was entered into under duress or via fraudulent means, or when one of the spouses was already legally married.

How long do I have to live in in the state of Georgia to get a divorce?

The state of Georgia requires that spouses suing for divorce to have lived in the state for a minimum of six months prior to filing divorce papers. Otherwise, Georgia courts are not considered to have jurisdiction over the divorce case.

What is the filing fee for a divorce in Georgia?

The court fees for filing the paperwork for a basic divorce in a Georgia court is $218.00. However, the total costs for a divorce can be much higher - especially in the case of a contested divorce, where attorney fees and mediation costs average from $15,000 to $20,000 or more.

How long does it take to get a divorce in Georgia?

If the process moves along without holdups, the paperwork for a divorce in Georgia can be processed in a minimum of 210 days. However, if the spouses are not in agreement about the divorce process, a contested divorce can take significantly longer.

3. Georgia General Divorce FAQ

Can my spouse stop me from getting a divorce?

Even if one spouse is opposed to getting a divorce, they cannot stop their partner from filing for and receiving a divorce in Georgia. While filing a non-contested joint petition for divorce speeds up the process, either spouse can file for divorce individually at any time.

Georgia permits spouses to sue for an at-fault divorce, and in this case their partner can contest the allegations in court. A non-fault petition for divorce, however, can generally not be contested by an unwilling spouse in Georgia.

Does Georgia have any limitations on remarriage after a divorce?

Georgia has no mandatory waiting period between the finalization of a divorce and either of the ex-spouses getting remarried. Remarriage following a divorce may affect the continued payment of alimony.

What is the divorce rate in Georgia?

According to the most recent CDC study, the yearly divorce rate in Georgia is 11 per 1,000 total population. The national divorce rate is 6.9 per 1,000 total population. Various studies suggest that nationwide, 30% to 50% of all marriages end in divorce.

Does Georgia recognize same sex divorces?

Since same-sex marriage was legalized nationwide in 2015, all states that previously did not allow same sex marriages, including Georgia, are required by federal law to perform both same sex marriages and same sex divorces. In some cases, court forms or procedures may still need to be updated to support same sex couples.

| State Law Official Text

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