Douglas W. Lewis, Gwinnett County Divorce Attorney –Lawrenceville Divorce Attorney – serving Gwinnett County and the metro-Atlanta area in Divorce, Family Law, Legitimation, Paternity, Modification, Contempt and Custody cases.
How to file for Divorce in Gwinnett County Superior Court?
1. Determine if you can file for divorce in Georgia. Generally speaking you must be a resident of the State of Georgia for at least the previous six months before you can file a divorce action in Georgia.
2. To file the divorce action in Gwinnett County your spouse must be a resident of Gwinnett County. If you live in Gwinnett County, but your spouse lives in Fulton County then you must file the divorce in Fulton County (unless your spouse waives venue). If you live in Barrow County, but your spouse lives in Gwinnett County, then the divorce action would be properly filed in Gwinnett County.
3. All divorces filed in Georgia must be filed in the appropriate Superior Court. All divorces filed in Gwinnett County must be filed with the Gwinnett County Superior Court clerk. The clerk's office is on the first floor of the courthouse located at 75 Langley Drive, Lawrenceville, Georgia (the courthouse is also known as the Gwinnett Justice and Administration Center “GJAC”).
4. When you file the divorce action you must pay the clerk's eFiling fees in the amount of $237.00 (said fee is subject to change).
5. There must be a Summons attached to the divorce petition or complaint. The divorce pleadings (the Summons, the Divorce Petition and any Standing Orders) must be served upon your spouse. Usually the Defendant Spouse is personally served with a copy of the divorce pleadings by a deputy sheriff or by a private process server. The Gwinnett County Sheriff's Department charges a fee of $50.00 to attempt service on a Defendant. If you want to use the services of a private process server In Gwinnett County then a motion must be filed with the court to request that a particular process server be appointed by the judge to personally serve the Defendant with the divorce pleadings. The fee charged by private process servers varies depending on travel time and other circumstances.
6. When a divorce action is filed the case will then be given a specific case number. The last digit of the case number will indicate which judge has been assigned to your case. For example, in Gwinnett County Superior Court if the last digit of your case number ends in 7 then you know your case has been assigned to Chief Judge Melodie Snell Conner. There are ten (10) Gwinnett County Superior Court judges.
7. Once your spouse has been properly served with a copy of the divorce pleadings then your case will proceed. A divorce case will either be an uncontested case or a contested case. An uncontested or settled divorce case means the parties have signed a Settlement Agreement which resolves all issues in the divorce case and the Agreement has been approved by the judge assigned to the case. (If the judge does not approve of the terms of the Settlement Agreement then the case is not settled.) A contested divorce case is a case in which the parties are unable or unwilling to settle and thus the case will go to trial before the judge or a jury. For more information please read Uncontested vs. Contested Divorce cases in Gwinnett County.
8. Each divorce case is unique and some can be quite complex. Many divorce cases involve some or all of the following: Answer and Counterclaim, Interrogatories, Request for Production of Documents, Request for Admissions, Depositions, Emergency Hearings, Temporary Hearings, Contempt Hearings, Domestic Relations Financial Affidavits, Mediation, Guardian ad Litems, Child Support Worksheets, Child Support Addendums, Parenting Plans, Quit Claim Deeds, Qualified Domestic Relations Orders (QDRO), Protective or Restraining Orders, Parenting Seminars, and Final Hearings.
If you have any questions about divorce or the Gwinnett County divorce process please do not hesitate to contact me for a free initial telephone consultation.
Gwinnett County Divorce and Family Law Attorney Douglas W. Lewis has over twenty years of experience in Gwinnett County and the Atlanta Metro area handling divorce, modification of custody and child support, contempt, paternity, legitimation, and family law cases. If you have any questions or want to schedule an office consultation then please contact Doug Lewis at 770-682-3765 or via email.