Blog Category

Temporary Hearings in Georgia Divorce Cases

Posted on: August 12th, 2013

One of the most popular questions surrounding divorce in Georgia pertains to temporary hearings, including what they are and why they may be beneficial. A divorce attorney can give you specific advice on what is best for you and your particular situation, but here’s some general information about temporary hearings in Georgia divorces:

  • Temporary hearings take place during the time after divorce papers are filed and before a final divorce decree has been issued, a time which is known as the “waiting period”.
  • Either spouse may request a temporary hearing, but it is not a required part of the Georgia divorce process.
  • The temporary hearing is not the same as the final divorce decree, but is meant to address some of the same issues, such as child custody, child support, child visitation, debts, alimony, and property division. Yet as the name implies, the decisions reached regarding these various aspects of the divorce are only preliminary and may change when final decisions are reached by the court.
  • The goal of a temporary hearing is to help take care of the practical details of your life while you are waiting for the divorce process to be finalized.

So how do you know if a temporary hearing is right for you and your situation? An experienced divorce attorney in Atlanta, or elsewhere in Georgia, will explain to you the various options available to you under Georgia law, and based on those options, will help you make the decision that will best protect your interests.

When you present your case before a judge at your temporary hearing, you want to make sure you have a Georgia divorce attorney with plenty of courtroom experience in order to win your case and achieve the outcome you seek.

More about divorce in Georgia courts here:

Adopting Foreign Children: What Every Couple Should Know

Posted on: August 12th, 2013

Having a child can do wonders in the family. For most parents, they consider their children as the bonding element that strengthens the relationship between family members. However, there are couples who may find it hard to bear a child. When all medical remedies and prayers left unanswered, there’s another option to take – adoption.

Adopting foreign children has been common in the United States. Records from the U.S. Immigration state that there are over 200,000 adopted foreign children residing in the country. Apparently, there are approximately 20,000 international adoptions processed annually.

Starting the Process

A couple wanting to adopt a foreign child should acquire approval from the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), a division of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). This will make the process legitimate, granting the child U.S. citizenship. They should also know the process involved in both countries – the U.S. and the country they wish to get a child from.

Prospective parents can also contact a legitimate international adoption agency for a smoother process. These institutions are familiar with the immigration process in different countries, and may have good resources together with their partner agencies. Make sure to use the services of a reputable international agency with years of experience to avoid legal issues in the future.

Laws Governing each Country

Foster parents should be aware of the laws governing the foreign country. The issue is a confidential matter between the couple and the government or the international agency. Thus, the U.S. government doesn’t have the right to petition in the best interest of the parents in cases of international adoptions. The adoption attorney may remind the couple of such fact but it’s up to them to research on the laws of the corresponding foreign country.

Immigration Issues

An adopted child doesn’t automatically turn into a U.S. citizen. There are legal procedures and requirements needed to be met by the couple in order for their children to become a U.S. citizen. Prospective foster parents should coordinate with the USCIS regarding this matter.

The adoption attorney may offer two legal methods. First is that parents can apply for adoption if the child has lived with them for two years in the U.S. given that they met all the requirements stated by the USCIS. Second is going to an orphanage and complying with the immigration requirements.

After immigration issues, other factors to consider include the couple’s income, length of marriage and stability of relationship, and living conditions. These are often checked by the social welfare.

How to Choose a Divorce Lawyer

Posted on: August 12th, 2013

Georgia Divorce AttorneysIf you are contemplating a divorce, one of the most important decisions you can make is who you choose to legally represent you. The difference between an average and an excellent Georgia divorce attorney can literally make all the difference when it comes to resolving your case in the most effective and beneficial manner.

While each person may have unique requirements when it comes to what you are looking for in a divorce lawyer, there are some general points you should keep in mind. Here are a few tips for choosing a lawyer:

  1. Ask for recommendations from family and friends. A referral could be one of the easiest and most effective ways to find a good divorce attorney in Atlanta, for example. This method produces good results because the people recommending will most likely have direct experience with an attorney, and would be able to give very specific and detailed information about them.
  2. Read online reviews. Online reviews are powerful ways to learn more about an attorney and help you choose between many options. Many times the people who take the time and energy to write insightful online reviews often had a very positive (or negative) experience with a particular divorce lawyer or family law firm. You can learn a great deal from both perspectives.
  3. Schedule a free consultation. Most if not all divorce lawyers will offer a free consultation to discuss your case and determine how they might be able to assist you. Based on this interaction with the attorney, take notes on your thoughts and impressions. Think about whether they would be a good fit for your needs and requirements.
Choosing an experienced divorce attorney is a vital step in the divorce process. Having a legal advocate on your side whom you trust is invaluable during divorce. For a free consultation with one of our Atlanta divorce attorneys, simply contact us using the form to the left, send us an email, or give us a call.
Image courtesy allensima

GA “No-Fault” Divorce Law

Posted on: August 12th, 2013

No-Fault Divorce in GAAlthough with many divorces it seems that one party or the other is very much at fault, there is an option provided for under Georgia law enabling a “no-fault” divorce. If you are wondering whether a “no-fault” divorce would be best for you and your situation, the only way to be sure is to contact an experienced divorce attorney.


Atlanta Estate Planning Considerations

Posted on: August 12th, 2013

Estate Planning Lawyers AtlantaIt’s not a pleasant conversation, and probably isn’t one that will come up during conversation at holiday parties, but it is an important conversation: have you made legally sound estate planning arrangements? Our experienced estate planning attorneys want to help you make all the necessary arrangements when it comes to your final wishes.


Chambliss Wants Tsarnaev Named Enemy Combatant

Posted on: August 12th, 2013

WASHINGTON — Sen. Saxby Chambliss (R-Georgia) said the Obama administration needs to go further to limit Dzhokar Tsarnaev’s rights as part of the Boston Marathon bombings investigation.

“I urge this administration to do the right thing and deem this suspect as an enemy combatant so that we get as much intelligence as legally possible before the suspect is Mirandized,” Sen. Chambliss said in a statement released on Saturday.

Late in the day, CNN reported that Tsarnaev suffered an injury to his throat and may not be able to talk, according to a federal source.

But prosecutors have already announced they’re prepping a special team called the “High-Value Detainee Interrogation Group” to go in as soon as possible.

The special interrogators are not required to read his Miranda rights, including his right to remain silent and the right to have an attorney present.

“They want to understand the entire scope of this network so they can learn from this and stop it the next time,” said Todd Stein, who teaches national security at Georgia Tech. “They want to exhaust every possible lead before shutting down the interrogation of this individual.”

Stein said the high-value interrogation team was created by the Obama administration three years ago.

“It was a direct response to the Christmas day bombing, and a lot of heat they got from Congress over the fact that they did not use all the information they possibly could to stop the next terrorist attack,” Stein told 11Alive’s Jennifer Leslie.

In that case, the suspect was Mirandized early on, and critics saw a missed opportunity.

“Given what we know, and more importantly don’t know, about Dzhokhar Tsarnaev and his brother, this terrorist should be fully interrogated as an enemy combatant before any consideration is given to providing Miranda warnings,” Sen. Chambliss said in his statement. “I am disappointed that it appears this administration is once again relying on Miranda’s public safety exception to gather intelligence which only allows at best a 48-hour waiting period that may expire since the suspect has been critically wounded.”

Tsarnaev’s father has told reporters he wants his son to tell everything and be honest.

But he doesn’t have to talk, regardless of whether he hears his Miranda rights.


Georgia Divorce Mediation: How It Can Help

Posted on: August 12th, 2013

Divorce Mediation in GeorgiaThe divorce mediation process in Georgia is designed to help a divorcing couple resolve their issues outside of the courtroom, which can be very beneficial to both parties, especially when children are involved. You might have heard about mediation as an option for divorce proceedings in Georgia, but are not sure how it works. Here’s a general overview of Georgia divorce mediation and how it might help you.

Basically, in most divorces, there are significant disagreements regarding certain aspects of the divorce, or perhaps even every aspect of the divorce. In such a case, if the couple is unable to resolve these differences among themselves, even with the assistance of an experienced divorce attorney, for example, then a judge (and possibly a jury as well) must decide on those issues. Divorce mediation in Georgia hopes to prevent that step by having the couple sit down and try to work out their issues together with the help of a mediator.

Don’t worry, you can (and should) have your own divorce attorney by your side to make sure that your interests are protected during the mediation process. You and your spouse will each take turns explaining your side of the argument around a particular issue where there isn’t full agreement. The mediator will try their best to make sure each side is represented equally, but again it’s best to have an experienced Georgia divorce lawyer close at hand to make sure that your side is being fairly represented.

Going the route of mediation for your Georgia divorce could mean lower overall cost and stress because they generally take less time and avoid the court process entirely. There’s also the benefit of resolving contentious issues in such a way that you and your spouse may leave the divorce process on better terms than through going to court. This may be especially important if you have children and are sharing custody.

Feel free to contact our caring legal team for a free consultation to discuss whether a mediated Georgia divorce is in your best interests.

Image courtesy micmol on Flickr.

GA Separate Maintenance or Divorce?

Posted on: August 12th, 2013

Georgia Separate MaintenanceA popular question clients often ask is whether they should pursue a Georgia separate maintenance agreement instead of a divorce. This is an important question because there are significant differences between the two. It’s crucial to understand these differences so that you can make the best choice for you and your situation. Our experienced Atlanta divorce attorneys can discuss each option with you in detail so that you feel comfortable with each and can make an informed decision.

A GA separate maintenance means that a couple remains legally married but live separately and are officially separated, without actually being divorced or their marriage being dissolved. Generally speaking, a couple may choose to go the route of a Georgia separate maintenance agreement for several reasons. One reason is that the couple is opposed to divorce on a moral or religious level, but no longer wish to live together and want formal separation. Another reason to choose separate maintenance over divorce is if an individual wishes to keep health insurance or social security benefits.

If the above reasons sound like they are an important part of your decision-making process, it’s essential to speak with one of our Atlanta family law attorneys for individualized legal counsel. Depending on your situation, our attorneys might advise you that either separate maintenance or divorce would best protect your interests. Regardless of which option you choose, the same set of issues must be resolved, including separation of assets, alimony, and if you and your spouse have children, child custody, visitation, and support. The successful resolution of these issues  require experienced legal assistance, and will literally determine the course of the rest of your life. Don’t wonder whether you made the right choice when it comes to your future – contact our caring attorneys for a free consultation. They will address your questions about Georgia separate maintenance, divorce, and anything else you may be wondering regarding Georgia law.

Image courtesy thewhitestdogalive on Flickr.

Domestic Partnership Agreement in GA: Do You Need One?

Posted on: August 12th, 2013

Domestic Partnership Agreement in GAIf you live in Georgia and are in a same-sex relationship, you might have heard about the benefits of obtaining a domestic partnership agreement. However, you might not know exactly if you need one or how to go about obtaining one. Unfortunately, since same-sex marriage is not yet recognized by the state of Georgia, it is important to take specific legal steps to protect your family and your assets from the court system, which will not follow your wishes when it comes to distributing your assets.

So, an important question to ask yourself regarding whether or not you need a Georgia domestic partnership agreement is, are you and your partner in a committed relationship? If the answer is yes, a domestic partnership agreement is Georgia is an important step in protecting your relationship. Another question you should ask yourself is, do you or your committed partner have significant assets? Or do you have children? If the answer to either of these questions is yes, filing for a domestic partnership agreement is essential, and will make sure that your assets go to the people you wish them to, and not simply to biological relatives, which is often the case in Georgia courts.

In fact, a domestic partnership agreement is one of many legal protections our Atlanta family law attorneys recommend to gay and lesbian clients in Georgia. Our Atlanta domestic partnership attorneys can assist with a variety of other crucial legal measures that will protect you and your interests under Georgia law, including estate planning and more.

The important thing is to be proactive about your future and the future of your loved ones. Our Georgia family lawyers have extensive experience assisting gay and lesbian couples with filing a domestic partnership agreement in Georgia. Don’t leave something as essential as the well being of your partner and your children to chance. Contact our caring, professional Atlanta lawyers today for a free domestic partnership consultation.

Image courtesy ::: mindgraph ::: on Flickr

Alimony in Georgia: What You Need to Know

Posted on: August 12th, 2013

Atlanta alimony attorneysIf you are considering filing for divorce in Georgia, or have been served divorce papers, there’s a chance that alimony payments will be a part of your divorce negotiations. There are many factors that determine alimony payments in Georgia, which our experienced Atlanta alimony attorneys can explain to you thoroughly. However, it might be helpful to you to have a brief overview of how alimony payments are a part of the divorce process in Georgia.

Here’s what you need to know about alimony in Georgia:

  • In Georgia, alimony is awarded based on the particular financial needs of either spouse, and also on the projected capability of each spouse to earn income. Although alimony is typically thought of as applying only to women, it isn’t based on gender, so if the husband has demonstrated financial need and can’t earn income, there’s a possibility for him to be awarded alimony in Georgia.
  • Georgia law separates alimony into temporary and permanent. Temporary alimony is sometimes awarded in GA during the divorce process to provide financial stability to the spouse that is dependent on the other. Permanent alimony is usually incorporated into the final divorce decree, and how it is paid out, whether lump sum, periodically, or a combination of both is established at this time.
  • A variety of factors go into determining alimony payments in GA. Some of the top considerations include the standard of living each spouse had during marriage, how long the marriage lasted, the physical and emotional condition of each spouse, other financial resources the parties might have, and more.
  • In Georgia, alimony typically ends if the spouse receiving alimony remarries or passes away.

The final most important thing to know about alimony in Georgia is that it is often a hotly contested issue during a divorce, so it’s imperative to have an  experienced Atlanta divorce attorney on your side throughout the process to ensure you receive the alimony payments you deserve. If you would like to speak with one of our divorce attorneys in Atlanta about your alimony concerns, simply fill out the form to the left or give our office a call for a free consultation.

Image courtesy gwilmore on Flickr.