How Long Before a Divorce Is Official in Georgia?
By Heather Frances J.D.
As in other states, Georgia divorces are not official, or final, until a Georgia judge has signed a divorce decree. This is the end of the divorce process and makes the divorce complete. The time it takes to finalize a divorce in Georgia varies, from as little as a month to over a year, depending on the circumstances of your case.
After the Divorce Is Filed
Filing for divorce with your local court initiates the divorce process, but it does not mean that your marriage is officially dissolved. Instead, you must complete the divorce through the court system. In Georgia, courts can finalize your divorce in as little as a month if you and your spouse agree to the terms of your divorce, including property division, child custody and alimony. Generally, spouses who agree on these issues draft a settlement agreement for the court to adopt along with the divorce decree; this type of agreement speeds the divorce process. If you and your spouse do not agree on the terms of your divorce, the court may hold hearings and receive written arguments to decide outstanding issues. This delays your divorce since the court cannot grant a divorce until all disputed matters are resolved.
The Divorce Decree
When the court issues a written divorce decree, signed by the judge, your divorce is final and official. There is no waiting period in Georgia between when your divorce decree is signed and when you are officially divorced.
Heather Frances has been writing professionally since 2005. Her work has been published in law reviews, local newspapers and online. Frances holds a Bachelor of Arts in social studies education from the University of Wyoming and a Juris Doctor from Baylor University Law School.