Georgia Spousal Support

Formal and legal dissolution of a marriage is known as divorce. Divorce in the US is under the governance of state laws. A divorce requires certain residency requirements to be fulfilled so that a petition can be filed. Once divorce is granted, the property and assets have to be divided between the separated husband and wife. Spousal support or alimony is an important aspect of divorce in Georgia. The court can pass orders asking one of the spouses to pay alimony to other.

In Georgia, the alimony is authorized only in limited situations unlike other states.

Spousal support or alimony is of three types:

• Permanent alimony – payments continue until death of paying spouse or remarriage of spouse receiving payments.
• Rehabilitative alimony – payment for short duration only. The main aim of this payment is enabling the spouse to gain skills or experience needed to get employment so financial independence can be achieved.
• Temporary alimony – this is paid for a short time period sometimes during course of divorce proceedings.

In Georgia, spouse is not eligible for spousal support if he or she is guilty of adultery or desertion. Many factors are considered while finalizing the support amount.

These include:

• Length and duration of marriage.
• Marital conduct.
• Earning capacity and financial resources of both the spouses.
• Contribution of each towards marital estate.
• Age and health condition of both people involved.
• Financial value of properties possessed by each.
• Standard of living followed by couple while married.
• Time needed by one of them to gain employment.

There are many instances wherein former spouse receives two types of spousal support simultaneously – short term support as well as rehabilitative support. As soon as spouse is employed, rehabilitative support is withdrawn but short term support continues till completion of predetermined period. Temporary alimony can be paid before the finalization of divorce. This requires only a temporary hearing and is given out irrespective of adultery or desertion charges. Temporary hearings do not deal with fault charges and hence is not relevant here.

Spousal support payments have bearing upon division of marital property in Georgia. Hence spousal support is an important aspect of divorce here. Depending on duration of marriage and degree of financial dependence of a spouse on the other, alimony or spousal support is granted. The state rules in favor of alimony only if sufficient evidence proves that it is mandatory since court does not want a separated spouse to become a liability to the other.

In Georgia, married couple is responsible for each other and this includes financial responsibility as well. The husband and wife have to support each other and this does not stop until divorce is finalized and final decree signed.

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