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What is a Wife Entitled to in a Divorce in Georgia?

by Sharon Jackson  on December 28, 2023 under 

What is a wife entitled to in a divorce in Georgia? Under Georgia law, a wife is entitled to an equitable share of the marital property. This may not equate to an exact equal division of assets, but the court will aim for a fair split between both parties.

What’s fair or equitable will be determined on a case-by-case basis. If you’d like to learn what you could be entitled to in your divorce, it’s best to consult an experienced Georgia divorce lawyer.

Spousal Entitlements in a Georgia Divorce

During a Georgia divorce process, the court may grant specific entitlements to the wife depending on the circumstances. These include spousal support, child support, and asset distribution. In cases of fault divorce where the wife demonstrates that her spouse acted wrongly, the judge may also award the wife child custody and a larger portion of assets.

The court may grant spousal support, also known as alimony, wherein one spouse is required to provide financial assistance to the other. Alimony payments can last either for a specified duration or, in a few instances, without any specific time limit.

During the divorce proceedings, if a spouse requires financial support, the court may issue a temporary alimony order. Subsequently, this temporary arrangement may transform into permanent alimony if the court deems it appropriate. However, it should be noted that permanent alimony is not guaranteed following the conclusion of the divorce proceedings.

A wife seeking alimony may be granted it if the judge sees that she needs financial assistance that her husband can provide. However, it should be noted that she may not be eligible for alimony if she is the primary earner in the marriage.

If the wife is eligible to receive support, the court will then determine how much and for how long she will receive alimony. When making decisions about alimony payments, a judge will consider various factors including:

  • The wife’s standard of living
  • Duration of the marriage
  • The wife’s health
  • The financial stability of the wife
  • The wife’s contributions to the marriage.

Child Support in Georgia

If a wife has primary custody of the children in a Georgia divorce, as the custodial parent, she may receive child support as determined by a judge.

If both parents equally share parenting time, the wife may still be entitled to child support if her income is lower than that of her spouse.

In cases where spouses are unable to agree on child support arrangements, a judge may establish the terms. For an estimate of Georgia's basic child support obligations, spouses can combine their gross incomes and refer to the Georgia child support calculator under the state’s Child Support Guidelines.

Property Division in Georgia

In Georgia, the court divides marital property through equitable distribution, ensuring a fair allocation of assets between spouses. The wife and the husband are each entitled to a fair share of their marital property, which is generally any property they acquired during the marriage.

Separate property, or any asset owned by either spouse before the marriage, isn’t subject to equitable distribution and shall remain with its original owner.

However, if a judge finds that one spouse has intentionally hidden assets during the divorce process, the guilty spouse may receive a lesser portion of the assets.

What is the Division of Marital Property in Georgia?

When it comes to property division in divorce, Georgia follows a principle called equitable distribution. How does the court ensure that the division is equitable? Judges take into account various factors such as:

  • Marriage duration
  • Income of each spouse
  • Alimony granted to either party
  • Future needs of each spouse
  • Debts of each spouse
  • Contributions to the marriage by each spouse
  • Whether one spouse spent marital property on wrongdoing.

Thus, Georgia courts adopt a personalized approach when dividing marital property to establish a fair arrangement between the two parties involved.

Is a Wife Entitled to the House in Georgia?

This depends on whether the house is shared property or separate property. By Georgia divorce laws, the marital house is typically deemed shared property if either spouse purchased it during the marriage. As such, it should be fairly distributed between both parties.

The couple may decide how they ‘split’ the marital home, such as by selling it and dividing the proceeds. When the spouses are unable to reach an agreement regarding the distribution of the house, the judge will have to make the decision.

How Can a Wife Get a Share of Retirement in Georgia?

In divorce settlements, retirement benefits including 401(k)s, IRAs, and pension plans are regarded as marital property. This means a wife is likely entitled to a share of these during divorce proceedings. The court typically issues a qualified domestic relations order (QDRO) which divides a retirement account into two – one for each spouse.

In certain cases, however, retirement benefits acquired before the marriage may be excluded from the division. One caveat to this is that any earnings accumulated during the marriage, such as deposits made into retirement accounts or accrued interest, must be fairly divided between the divorcing couple.

Attorney Sharon Jackson Can Help

If you are contemplating a divorce and uncertain about the complexities involved, Attorney Sharon Jackson is available to assist you. Our team can provide the guidance you need when navigating divorce law, helping you secure what you’re entitled to.

To schedule your confidential consultation, please call us today at (678) 909-4100.


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