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Family Law deals with legal issues that are not necessarily related to a divorce. If you need help with one or more of the following issues, our experienced and effective legal team can help you. Give us a call at 770-408-0477 to speak with one of our attorneys.
Alimony – Also called spousal support, alimony is decided based on a number of factors at the discretion of the judge. Each case is distinct, but this type of financial support is usually reserved for cases in which one spouse has been dependent on another for the duration of the marriage. Particularly in the case of shorter marriages, Georgia courts tend to grant alimony that is rehabilitative, meaning it is paid for a set amount of time until the recipient is able to obtain a salary or education that will later lead to full time employment. Full time and temporary alimony are also possible, but the length of the marriage and several other factors will be taken into account before the judge reaches a decision about whether to grant alimony and, if so, what type of alimony will be granted.
Annulment – An annulment is different from a divorce because it invalidates the marriage, meaning that the marriage is declared void from its inception. It returns the parties to their pre-marital state as if the divorce never happened. There are criteria that need to be met before an annulment can be granted, otherwise the parties will have to file for divorce. One criterion is that no children were born of the marriage. Filing for annulment also requires that one of the parties can establish that the reason for annulment falls under the applicable grounds for annulment as stated by Georgia law.
Child Custody Modification – A child custody modification can occur for several reasons. This may include that the parenting ability of either party has significantly improved or worsened, and/or that the primary custody parent has decided to move and/or change the child’s school district. A parent can also file for such a modification if they believe it to be in the “Best Interest of the Child,” under the conditions stipulated under Georgia custody law. Talk to one of our attorneys today if you believe you or your child’s rights are being negatively impacted by the current child custody agreement in place.
Child Support Modification – There are several reasons that one party can file for an upward or downward child support modification. In most cases, a parent must wait two years after making a previous request to make another, however there are several exceptions to this two year rule, including the involuntary loss of income or a hardship that reduces the income of the party paying child support by 25 percent. The court can also order an increase in child support payment if there has been an increase in the income of the parent paying support, or, in some instances, if that parent has remarried and now has more income.
Contempt – In a family law case, contempt is a willful violation of a court order. In order to qualify as a contempt case, the violation of the court order must have been made willfully. Violations include not paying child support or spousal support in a timely manner and in total. Any activity that is covered by the court order can be the subject of a contempt allegation if willful violation can be proven.
Father’s and Men’s Rights – It has been shown that in two-thirds of all divorce cases, the woman files for divorce, and this statistic rises in couples who have children. You have thirty days to respond to a petition for divorce by filing an answer with the court. Typically, there will be an initial hearing to set temporary guidelines for child support and custody, alimony and other relevant issues. It is imperative to set the tone for the entire case by attending the temporary hearing with effective representation to ensure that your rights will be protected and upheld.
Mother’s and Women’s Rights – Especially when there are children involved, it is imperative to have a clear case planned out with an experienced attorney in order to ensure the most favorable outcome for you and your child(ren). Planning ahead – even before you file for divorce – can be a smart way to prepare a strong case that can effectively relay your position to the court and your conditions to your partner. Your lawyer will draft an agreement with you that will address issues important to you and pertinent to the case, including spousal and child support, child custody and visitation, asset and debt division, etc.
Grandparent’s Rights – According to Title 19, Chapter 9, Section 3 (C.G.A. 19-9-3)., a grandparent may intervene when any action concerning a minor child, divorce of parents, termination of parental rights, or visitation rights is before the court. Visitation rights do not terminate when an adoption occurs as long as it is by a blood relative or stepparent. A grandparent may gain child custody if a parent is deemed as unfit or if the child is fourteen years of age and chooses to live with the grandparents.
Legitimation – A legitimation action is filed if a father seeks to establish a legal relationship to his child and is not married to the mother of the child. When this action is filed, the father can expect to pay for child support as well as gain visitation rights. The action also entails that the child can inherit from the father and vice versa. Please keep in mind that being listed on a child’s birth certificate as the father does not legitimate the relationship; a court’s order for legitimation is the only manner in which a legal relationship can be created between father and child if the child was born out of wedlock.
Mediation – Mediation could be a more time and money efficient way to settle issues pertaining to divorce or family law. It is a process in which a neutral third party facilitates discussion between the parties and guides negotiations that both parties can ultimately accept or decline. The process is different because the final decision is made by the parties and not the mediator. Although it can take many hours, mediation is usually much quicker and less stressful than taking a case to court. The process is confidential, and if a mutual agreement cannot be reached, the case will proceed through the court process.
Name Changes – Many women asked for their maiden names to be restored during a divorce, but this can also be done after the process is over. If you want to change your name for any reason, our family law attorneys will petition the court for you. Once this has been granted, there are several other steps you will need to undertake: update your driver’s license and your passport, and notify the social security office of your new name. After you have made these changes on all of your legal documentation, contact your credit card providers, banks, subscription and service providers to notify them of the change.
Paternity – A paternity suit is when a mother, who is not married to the father of her child, brings a lawsuit to declare who the father is. This is the first step to achieving child support. Any child born to a married woman is presumed to be the child of her husband, giving him full rights and responsibilities therein. If you wish to prove that you are the father of a child born to a woman who is married to another man, you will need to do a DNA test to establish your paternity. Mothers can file a paternity action against the alleged biological father to collect child support and can also take legal action for non-support.
Prenuptial Agreements – Also known as an antenuptial agreement or a premarital agreement, a prenuptial agreement is a document that designates what will occur in the event of a divorce between the parties. It is decided and agreed upon by both parties and addresses many of the issues associated with divorce, most commonly focusing on financial issues such as how assets, property, debt will be divided in the event of a divorce as well as if there will be alimony paid to a spouse and how much will be paid. Child support and custody are most commonly not addressed in these agreements since that would not be in the best interest of the child.
Postnuptial Agreements – This type of agreement is created after a couple has entered a marriage to settle some of their affairs and assets in the event of a separation or divorce. The contents of this agreement can vary, but much like a prenuptial agreement, it will most commonly address the division of assets, properties and debt in the event of a divorce.
Separation and Separate Maintenance – Filing for a separation entails filing an order for separate maintenance with the court. This does not mean your marriage has ended – for all legal purposes, you are still married and cannot marry anyone else. You may live at the same address or apart and still be granted a separate maintenance. Alimony and child support are still available under a separate maintenance order.
Temporary Hearings – The primary purpose of a temporary hearing is to establish financial support for one of the parties during the time the main case is in progress. The hearing can address temporary issues such as child support, custody and visitation rights, temporary alimony, and court orders that mandate who will pay bills and attorney’s fees during the time the main case is in progress.
Coleman Legal Group, LLC team of divorce and family law attorneys handles cases in the following cities and communities: Atlanta, Alpharetta, Roswell, Johns Creek, Milton, Cumming, Marietta, Sandy Springs, Woodstock, Kennesaw, Gainseville, Norcross, Lawrenceville, Midtown, Inman Park, Duluth, Buckhead, Dunwoody, Vinings, Old Fourth Ward, Sugar Hill and Smyrna.
Our dedicated team of divorce and family law attorneys frequently handle cases for clients residing in the following counties: Fulton, Gwinnett, Forsyth, Cobb, DeKalb, Henry, Cherokee, Douglas, Carroll, Coweta, Paulding, Bartow, Hall, Barrow, Walton, Newton, Rockdale, Henry, Spalding, Fayette and Clayton.
Coleman Legal Group, LLC’s Georgia lawyers practice in the areas of Divorce, Family Law, Bankruptcy, Immigration and Business Law. We have two convenient offices located at:
Alpharetta Georgia Office
5755 North Point Parkway
Alpharetta, GA 30022
Atlanta Georgia Office
659 Auburn Avenue Northeast
Atlanta, GA 30312
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