Due to the downward turn in the economy, our Georgia family law firm often receives calls from people who are unable to afford to retain an attorney to represent them in their divorce and are seeking guidance on how to file for divorce without an attorney. Though our office does not give out free advice on how to file for divorce, you can make an appointment with one of our attorneys who will take you step by step through the documents that you need for your specific county, as each county's filing requirements are different. It is important to note that not all counties provide the documents required to file for divorce on-line. However, some counties, such as Forsyth County and Fulton County, have a family law center that will provide you with a packet of documents. You can contact the Superior Court Clerk's office for the county in which you reside to see if they can provide you with copies of documents.
Most counties in Georgia require the following documents to be completed for a divorce with children:
1. Complaint for Divorce
2. Summons form
3. Acknowledgment of Service. (Please note that if the opposing party does not acknowledge service, he or she must be served with a copy of the Complaint and Summons form.)
4. Consent to Trial within 31 days
5. Report of Divorce, Annulment or Dissolution of Marriage form
6. Domestic Relations Case Filing Information Form
7. Domestic Relations Financial Affidavit
8. Standing Order
9. Parenting Plan
10. Child Support Addendum
11. Child Support Worksheets
12. Marital Dissolution Agreement
In addition, for a divorce with children, you must complete a Parenting Plan, Child Support Addendum, and Child Support Worksheets, which must match the information that you provided in your Marital Dissolution Agreement. Also, both Parties are required to take a Parenting Seminar prior to a final hearing in your case. Most of the counties provide the schedules for their Parenting Seminar on-line.
The above information is general, and may not be all that is needed to obtain a divorce. Depending on the facts of your case and in which county you reside, there could be additional documents that you need to complete in order for a divorce to be granted.
If you are having any trouble preparing any of the documents listed above, please contact our office to schedule an appointment with one of our attorneys. If you have completed forms that you found on-line and you would like an attorney to review them, we would be happy to do so. Please let our experienced team of attorneys at Meriwether &Tharp LLC help you in finalizing your divorce.
By Amy Trice, Paralegal, Meriwether & Tharp, LLC