Antenuptial & Prenuptial Agreements
Many individuals, hoping to reduce the difficulties often associated with the divorce process, want to outline the rights and responsibilities of the parties in advance, should the marriage fail.
There are many situations in which a premarital agreement can be appropriate. Couples with substantial assets such as real property, pension plans, retirement accounts and stock options and business interests will often seek a premarital agreement to ensure retention of assets should the marriage prove unsuccessful. Families will often encourage children to obtain a premarital agreement if a child is responsible for family financial or business interests. The same is true for young professionals and entrepreneurs seeking to protect financial and business interests. Couples entering their second marriage will often seek an agreement defining the rights and responsibilities of the new couple should the second marriage become unsuccessful. This is often done to protect children of a prior marriage. These are just a few instances in which couples can consider a premarital agreement in contemplation of upcoming nuptials.
Financial disclosure and timing are essential when planning a prenuptial agreements. It is important to contact an attorney when contemplating marriage to determine if a prenuptial agreement is right for you. Once it is determined that a prenuptial agreement is needed, it is important that you work to ensure that the prenuptial agreement is completed earlier rather than later in your marital planning process.
Frequently Asked Questions
How long does it take to get a divorce in Georgia?
You can finalize a divorce as little as 31 days after service. Georgia does not require a waiting period for divorce.
Am I entitled to alimony?
Alimony is based on one party's financial needs and the other party's ability to pay, as well as conduct issues. Realistically speaking, alimony these days is intended to be rehabilitative in nature, to provide the requesting spouse with an opportunity to become gainfully employed and/or to increase his or her earning potential. Some judges are more likely to award spousal support than others, so it helps if your attorney is familiar with your assigned judge.
How are our assets divided?
Georgia is an equitable division property state. Equitable division means whatever is fair and reasonable under the circumstances; it does not necessarily mean an equal division of "marital" assets between spouses, although more often than not, most assets are divided somewhere in the range of 50/50. There are numerous factors the court will consider to determine what is fair and reasonable under the circumstances
Does every case have to go to trial?
No. The vast majority of cases, including family law matters, are resolved without a trial, through agreement of the spouses, negotiations by their attorneys, or mediation. If the spouses cannot agree, even after being prodded to do so by attorneys, mediators, and the court, a trial is necessary.
What is family court?
It is a court devoted to handling only family law cases.
What is child custody?
Custody is a legal determination of how the parties care and make decisions for minor children. There are two types of custody: Legal and Physical. Legal custody determines which parent(s) will participate in making major decisions affecting the children, such as decisions about the children’s education, healthcare and well-being. Physical custody involves who will care for the children on a day-to-day basis.
What factors can be used to decide custody?
Ideally, the parties to a divorce are able to reach a mutually agreeable out of court marital settlement agreement that includes custody and visitation with any minor children of the marriage. When it becomes clear an agreement is not forthcoming, a court will have to decide using a “best interest of the child” standard.
How is child support calculated?
Child support is calculated based upon guidelines that are established by the state. Generally, child support guidelines take into account the incomes of the parties, the number of days each party has the child, and other expenses related to the child, such as health care and daycare costs. Although each state has set guidelines, the Court may deviate from the guidelines at its discretion.
What is alimony?
Alimony is generally a support payment by one spouse to the other spouse. Alimony is generally not available to a spouse who caused the dissolution of the marriage by adultery or desertion. Alimony may be paid in a one-time lump sum, periodic payments for a limited time or until the receiving spouse dies or remarries. Alimony is awarded to either spouse in accordance with the needs of the spouse and the ability of the other spouse to pay
What is “Joint Legal Custody”?
Joint legal custody means that both parents have the right to make decisions affecting the children such as education, medical, religious, extra-curricular and so on.
1820 The Exchange SE
Atlanta, GA 30339
12600 Deerfield Parkway
Alpharetta, GA 30004