Divorce in Gwinnett County, Georgia
The laws regarding divorce throughout the state of Georgia vary by county. It’s important to ensure that you know the laws and procedures for the county in which you will be filing for a divorce. If you do not follow the legal guidelines your divorce may be delayed or there could be issues arise. To file for divorce in the state of Georgia you or your spouse must have been a resident for at least the six months leading up to the filing.
Quick Facts for Filing for Divorce in Gwinnett County:
- Divorces in Gwinnett County must be filed in the Superior Court.
- In Gwinnett County, there is different paperwork that needs to be filed depending on whether or not you have minor children. You can find the forms that need to be filed online, including the forms for filing with minor children, and for those who are filing without minor children.
- You are able to legally remarry after the court has issued a Final Judgment and Decree of Divorce.
- The divorce packet of paperwork needs to be completed and submitted, along with the filing fee. The most recent filing fee for a divorce in Gwinnett County is $204, plus a $50 fee for if the Gwinnett County Sherriff’s Department will need to serve the action. The fees need to be paid in cash or by two separate money orders. If the person being served cannot be found, there is an $80 fee that must be paid to the Gwinnett Daily Post newspaper for the notice to be published.
- Divorces are either contested (you have disagreements) or uncontested (you have signed a Settlement Agreement).
- When filing for a divorce in Gwinnett County, you have two options. You can complete and file the paperwork yourself, or you can hire an attorney who will complete the paperwork and file it on your behalf, and provide you with representation.
When filing the paperwork for divorce in Gwinnett County, you must fill out every section accurately. The forms you will need to start the divorce include:
- Domestic Relations Case Filing Information Form
- Complaint for Divorce
- Domestic Relations Financial Affidavit
- Mutual Restraining Order
- Sheriff’s Entry of Service
There are additional forms that may be necessary, depending on your personal situation. These include:
- Notice of Lis Pendens
- Rule Nisi
- Affidavit of Poverty and Order of Poverty
- Child Support Worksheet
Gwinnett County Divorce with Minor Children
Those filing for divorce in Gwinnett County with minor children will be required to attend a parenting workshop. The four-hour educational workshop will provide parents with information regarding co-parenting issues. Attendees will learn how continued conflict in co-parenting damages children, and they will learn tools and skills they can use to minimize the conflict and help protect their children. The Advanced Co-Parenting Workshop requires pre-registration and is $60 per person.
When there are minor children involved, the court will make the final decision as to where the child will reside, visitation, child support, etc. A parenting plan will need to be submitted with your Final Judgment. Assets that are acquired during the duration of the marriage are typically split, with the court making the decision and issuing the final decree.
Gwinnett County also offers a Family Law Information Class. The free class helps answer some common questions that families have, including those related to divorce, child custody, and child legitimacy. There is also a mediation program offered, which can be helpful for those who need third party assistance to help settle disputes. While the mediator doesn’t have the ability to make decisions or impose settlements, they can be helpful in facilitating communication so that solutions can be reached.
The Judicial Court of Georgia offers a child support commission website. This site offers an online child support calculator, which may be helpful for those who are divorcing and have minor children.
Should you hire an attorney?
Whether or not you hire an attorney to assist with filing for your divorce is a personal choice. However, it is important to note that completing the necessary forms to file may be complicated for some people. There are also some who may be ideal candidates to have an attorney file on their behalf and represent them. These cases include those with minor children, assets that were gained during the course of the marriage, if there are disputes, or if there are other uncommon circumstances that need to be addressed or resolved.
If you have specific legal questions regarding your divorce in Gwinnett County you should consult with an attorney who can review the facts of your case in detail and then present you with your best options. If you cannot afford an attorney and feel you need legal assistance, you may find one that takes payment plans, credit cards, or you may find a pro bono (free of charge) attorney by contacting Georgia Legal Aid.