In Georgia, divorces are filed in the Superior Courts. In order to file for divorce in Georgia, the Court must have subject matter jurisdiction over the marriage and personal jurisdiction over the non-filing spouse.
For Georgia to have subject matter jurisdiction, the filing party must have been a resident of the state for six months prior to filing. O.C.G.A. §19-5-2. In the case of a party who travels a lot for business reasons, this means the party must have established an initial residence in Georgia and intend to return to Georgia to live. If the filing party is not a resident of Georgia, the divorce can still be brought in this state if the respondent has been a resident of Georgia and of the county in which the action is brought for six months prior to filing. O.C.G.A. §19-5-2. The six-month subject matter jurisdiction requirement cannot be waived.
The State of Georgia must also have personal jurisdiction over the non-filing spouse. If the non-filing spouse lives in Georgia and is personally served within Georgia, then Georgia has personal jurisdiction. The non-filing spouse can waive personal jurisdiction and consent to jurisdiction in Georgia for the divorce action. If the non-filing spouse does not waive jurisdiction, the filing spouse likely has to go to that party’s state of residence to file the divorce.