Divorce can be complicated and stressful, as it involves meeting several people’s needs and addressing hard decisions that may not satisfy all relevant parties. Call an experienced divorce lawyer to learn more about what to expect from the Atlanta divorce process before you proceed with complex litigation. A dedicated legal professional could explain your legal options and how to navigate through the divorce proceedings.
Mediation is when both parties in a divorce present their position and settlement offers to a neutral third party who assess them to come up with a resolution in order to get the divorced finalized. While this process gets most cases solved, it is non-binding, and either party can walk out at any time.
Arbitration involves parties of a divorce submitting all the issues to a neutral third party who is not a judge and has been ordered by the court to decide the issues. The parties essentially present their case to this private person — a lawyer who has been appointed by the court, for example. The arbitrator’s decision is binding upon the parties, and there are no appellate rights, as parties of a divorce who cannot come to a consensus on their own agree to stick with what the arbitrator decides.
Conduct still plays a role in the determination of how property is equitably divided. For example, if the divorce is the result of one party committing adultery, that act could bar them from receiving alimony. Also, experts may come in and testify about legal trust issues such as valuation experts talking about the value of different companies and business interests.
The role of the spouse is going to be the same whether they filed for divorce or are responding to it, which is to participate in the process in good faith, provide the documents, and answer questions honestly. The plaintiff gets to present their case first and have the last word, and the defense must go second.
A judge presiding over a divorce proceeding would make the rulings and could ultimately decide what happens with assets, child support, alimony, and custody of the children if the parties cannot agree. The judge can also set temporary rules for pending divorce cases, remove one party from the home if neither party wants to move out, and set visitation schedules. They can decide any discovery disputes if an opposing party is not producing their bank statements or not disclosing what they should be, as well.
Divorce is initiated by one of the parties when they file a complaint, a relief, or a petition for divorce and is just like any other civil lawsuit in that it has to be served to an opposing party. This process does not differ between contested and uncontested divorces. For help with the divorce process in Atlanta, reach out to a seasoned lawyer.
The Atlanta divorce process can take 31 days from start to finish. In an uncontested case, the documents would be drafted and everyone would sign off on them. The divorce can be finalized 31 days after that. However, a divorce can take as long as three years depending on the circumstances and how complicated the case may be, such as if a business or children are involved.
Anticipating the process and outcome of a divorce case can be tricky, so you should let a skilled lawyer help you establish your case. An attorney could help you prepare for potential roadblocks along the way as well as potential outcomes, favorable or not. Call today to learn more about the Atlata divorce process and how a lawyer could help your situation.