It’s completely normal to feel overwhelmed and scared when considering a divorce. It’s a big decision that will bring significant changes to your life, and it can be difficult to know where to start.
First, remember that you are not alone and that resources are available to help you. You can start by reaching out to a trusted friend or family member for support or contacting a licensed therapist or counselor specializing in divorce.
Once you’ve decided to end your marriage, you should seek guidance from a Georgia family law attorney who can provide you with information on your rights and options. Your attorney will help you decide whether a divorce or legal separation is best for your situation. These are significant decisions, so take your time, gather information, and make the choice that is right for you.
Do I Want a Judicial Separation or a Divorce?
Divorce and judicial separation are both legal proceedings that dissolve a marriage. However, they have several key differences. Understanding these differences can help you make an informed decision.
Judicial separation is a court-ordered separation that allows the parties to live apart without ending their marriage. It can be a valuable option for those who have religious or moral objections to divorce or who wish to retain certain benefits of being married, such as health insurance or tax filings.
Key Features of Judicial Separation in Georgia
- The parties remain legally married but are living apart
- Property and financial matters are still settled through the court process, just as in a divorce
- Spousal support and child custody determined through the court process
- The method of obtaining a judicial separation is similar to the divorce process
Divorce, on the other hand, is the legal termination of a marriage. Once a divorce is granted, the parties are no longer considered married and can remarry if they wish. It is final and permanent unless the couple chooses to remarry in the future.
Key Features of Divorce in Georgia
- The court legally terminates the marriage and does not consider the couple married.
- The court settles all property and financial matters.
- Spouses and the courts determine all support and custody.
- The process of obtaining a divorce is similar to the process of getting a judicial separation.
Comparison of Judicial Separation and Divorce
Both judicial separation and divorce allow for the settlement of property and financial matters and the determination of spousal support and child custody. The main difference between the two is that judicial separation allows the parties to remain legally married, while divorce terminates the marriage.
When choosing to separate or divorce legally, discussing your case with an experienced Atlanta divorce lawyer is important. In addition, consider the following:
- What are your personal and religious beliefs regarding marriage and divorce?
- What are your goals for the future, both in terms of your relationship with your spouse and your personal life?
- Do you see a possibility of reconciliation with your spouse?
- Do you have specific health benefits that might get terminated if you divorce?
- What are your priorities related to property, finances, and children?
- What is your current living situation, and do you feel safe in your home?
- How will a divorce or legal separation impact your finances and quality of life?
- Have you considered the potential impact on your children and family members?
- Are you willing to work with your spouse to reach a mutually acceptable agreement, or do you anticipate a contentious and adversarial process?
- Have you consulted with a family law attorney to understand the legal process and potential outcomes of a divorce or legal separation?
- What are the tax implications of staying married versus getting divorced?
Contact Atlanta Family Lawyers
Hobson & Hobson is an Atlanta family law firm which knows that divorcing couples don’t always know what to do when they’re looking to end their marriage. Should you get a divorce or legal separation? How does the process work? When you call our family law office, you’ll receive compassionate yet aggressive legal guidance that will answer all your questions. This is the best way to explore your legal options and move forward into your new future.