Family Law Lawyers in Georgia Dedicated to Helping Our Clients
Every year, thousands of family law cases are filed in the Georgia courts, and each one of these has a real-life person or family behind the paperwork. The family courts have the important job of making decisions about things like child custody, child support, and the termination of parental rights. These are emotional circumstances, and it’s easy to get overwhelmed with the decisions that need to be made and the steps that need to be taken. This is why it’s important to have someone you can trust to help you through the process.
When you need an experienced divorce attorney — and if you are involved in a family law case, you do — call the law firm of Lunn Law LLC. Our attorneys have years of experience helping clients navigate the complex Georgia family law system and are ready to talk with you about your case, provide counsel on your options, and represent your interests from filing to the final order.
What Types of Cases Does a Family Law Attorney in Georgia Handle?
Family law cases are complex and vary in specific details, but there are certain types of cases that are extremely common for family law attorneys to be a part of. Here are a few of the most common cases we see at Lunn Law LLC.
Divorce is one of the most common types of cases that family law attorneys see. The specific issues present in a divorce depend largely on if there were children born out of the marriage and how well the parties are able to get along in the divorce discussions. Every divorce case must include a property division agreement, and some may also include determining whether spousal support is warranted and how much will be paid if so.
Divorces that involve minor children are often more complex because they must also involve decisions about child custody and child support. But they’re also more challenging because these issues aren’t able to be included in a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement. A prenuptial agreement can spell out exactly what is supposed to happen with spousal support and property division, but child custody and child support matters aren’t allowed to be included in these documents. This is one reason why it’s crucial to have the support of an experienced legal team.
Child Custody Disputes
Child custody disputes are often one of the most contentious and time-consuming aspects of family law. A child custody case where the parents are at odds on what is in the best interests of the children often ends up at trial, where the judge hears both sides and has to make the determination they believe is best based on the evidence and witness statements presented. Child custody disputes can involve both legal custody and physical custody and can be quite emotional for all the parties involved. Family law attorneys work to preserve their client’s parent-child relationship and ensure that they can be an active and consistent part of their child’s life.
Child Support Determination, Modification, and Enforcement
Child support is another issue that must be decided in cases of a divorce involving minor children, but it’s unique in that child support also comes up in family law cases where the parents were never married. Child support is designed to ensure that the children don’t suffer as a result of the parents not living together and so that they are able to maintain the quality of life they would have had if the parents were in a relationship. In Georgia, the custodial parent is usually the one receiving child support, and the noncustodial parent is the one paying, but this isn’t always the case. Child support depends on the incomes of both parties and the custody agreement, and in some cases, the courts may not award child support at all.
You may not immediately think of adoption when you think of the family court system, but adoptions have to go through a specific legal process. A family law attorney can help you ensure that the biological parent’s rights have been legally terminated and that the adoption can proceed without issue. In cases of open adoption, an attorney may also be able to help the parties come up with an agreement that helps the child maintain family relationships with their biological family after the adoption is complete.
What Are the Grounds for Divorce in Georgia?
Georgia law has 13 specific reasons for divorce laid out in the Georgia Code:
- Incestuous marriage
- Mental incapacity at the time of the marriage
- Impotence at the time of the marriage
- Force, menace, duress, or fraud in obtaining the marriage
- One spouse being pregnant by another person’s child at the time of the marriage without the other spouse knowing
- Criminal conviction falling into the category of “moral turpitude” results in a jail sentence of at least 2 years
- Habitual drunkenness
- Incurable mental illness
- Habitual drug addiction
- Irretrievable brokenness
It’s important to note that many of these reasons have other stipulations or time frames that must be present to be able to use that reason in your filing. The majority of couples choose to list that the marriage is irretrievably broken as their reason for divorce.
Where Are Family Law Cases, Heard?
In Georgia, family law cases can be heard in either the Superior Court or the Juvenile Court. Cases involving divorce, child support, child custody, and anything related to these are heard in the Superior Court, and the vast majority of family law cases fall into this category. However, cases involving terminating a parent’s rights or deprivation are heard in the Juvenile Court under Georgia law.
What Are the Benefits of Working With an Experienced Family Law Attorney?
Working with a law firm that has extensive family law experience provides many advantages. The first is that you will have a better understanding of your rights. Many people go into a divorce or custody battle without truly understanding what Georgia laws allow. This can lead to unreasonable expectations, such as in cases of child custody disputes, or not pursuing everything you may be entitled to, such as in cases involving property division. Working with a family law firm like Lunn Law LLC ensures you are fully informed.
A family law attorney can also help you move your case along more efficiently. They know exactly how to file the motions and paperwork so that they don’t get returned or have to be redone. They also have only your interests in mind, which is important when things like your finances and relationship with your children are on the line. With dedicated legal representation, you can be sure that you’re getting knowledgeable legal counsel and have someone to ask questions as you move through the process.
Dealing with the Georgia family law system can be a challenge. There are thousands of pages of statutes that may apply to your case, and it’s time-consuming and risky to try to navigate your case alone. At Lunn Law LLC, we put our years of experience and legal knowledge to work for your case to take that burden and ensure that you have thorough legal representation to fight for your rights and help protect your future. Call our office today at 770-762-4628 to schedule a consultation.