Difference Between Divorce or Legal Separation | Georgia
For those spouses seeking a change in their marital status in Georgia, divorce is not the only option. They also may want to consider legal separation.
While a divorce is a legal termination of a marriage, legal separation is an option for those spouses willing to stay legally married while living apart. The latter option can be a great way for spouses to work out their marriage-related or personal issues.
The critical thing to remember is that the court handles both options, whether it’s marriage termination or the rights and duties of a couple living apart.
In Georgia, the correct term for legal separation is separate maintenance. And yet, its concept is preserved as separate maintenance allows spouses to remain legally married while living separately.
On the contrary, by filing for divorce, the spouses will have their marriage terminated. They have to go through the whole divorce process and prepare their divorce papers in such a case. The spouses need to decide whether to proceed with a contested or an uncontested divorce and handle their divorce-related issues.
It’s essential to consider the advantages and disadvantages of both options available before diving into the litigations. For example, getting a divorce may become an exhausting procedure as the spouses will have to deal with divorce forms which can become tricky.
However, today, online divorce can take care of divorce paperwork quickly and at an affordable price. Using internet divorce platforms, spouses can generate all the necessary divorce forms without leaving home and be sure of compliance with local laws and regulations. It’s an excellent way to save time and reduce the cost of divorce.
When it comes to legal separation, the significant point is that the property can’t be divided or awarded by a judge. Thus, it’s implied that the marital assets can only be split when filing for a divorce.
These two options have their pros and cons. The spouses need to consider the differences and similarities of divorce and legal separation in Georgia to choose the best one.
Divorce or Legal Separation: Differences
First and foremost, when it comes to legal separation, the spouses remain married. Their marriage can only be terminated through a divorce. However, these two legal concepts have other differences:
- Marital status: Once the spouses are granted a divorce decree, they can remarry.
- Remarriage/reconciliation: If divorced spouses decide to change their minds and reconcile, they will have to remarry to be legally reunified. While being legally separated, reconciliation is a much easier process.
- Financial or health-related decision-making: Legally separated spouses are still allowed to make decisions for the other spouse as they are still considered immediate family. At the same time, divorced spouses won’t be able to participate in any decision-making process.
- Other benefits (including health care): Legal separation does not affect a spouse’s rights to any social security benefits. It means that legally separated spouses are still considered married for social security purposes. However, spouses should check on current information as several legal peculiarities exist.
- Debts/liabilities: In a divorce, spouses divide debts in or out of court, depending on the type of proceeding. So unlike in legal separation, they won’t be responsible for the other spouse’s debts once the marriage is terminated.
- Property rights: While legally separated, the spouses preserve their rights to property benefits (typically, upon the other spouse’s death). In case of divorce, the property issue must be resolved.
Divorce or Legal Separation: Similarities
Whether getting a divorce or legal separation, the spouses must resolve several issues. Such issues typically include:
- Child custody;
- Child visitation;
- Property division (that only concerns the property jointly acquired before separation); and
- Separation maintenance. *
* There is an equivalent to alimony and child support in a legal separation. However, the effects will differ compared to a divorce.
However, the spouses must remember that if they fail to settle these issues amicably, they will have to take it to court, whether it’s a divorce or legal separation.
Separate Maintenance Eligibility
According to Georgia family law, to be eligible for separate maintenance, the spouses must demonstrate the following:
- The spouses are legally married;
- They are living separately (no cohabitation), and
- Neither spouse filed for divorce.
Separation Agreement & Marital Settlement Agreement
When it comes to legal separation in Georgia, there is one document that can be incredibly useful while outlining the terms of your separation. This document is called a separation agreement, and it requires both parties to settle such issues as child custody, child support, spousal support (alimony), etc.
Note: As for property and debt division, the date of separation and the terms for dividing the property acquired after separation need to be included in the separation agreement.
If the spouses are getting a divorce, they should consider developing another document known as the Marital Settlement Agreement. This document outlines all their post-divorce arrangements regarding child custody and support, marital property division, allocation of debts, alimony, etc. Such a document is a much more convenient way to resolve all the divorce-related issues amicably before going to court.
Each couple has their reasons to choose divorce or legal separation, and it’s undoubtedly important to weigh the pros and cons of each option before going through the whole legal proceeding. For some spouses, separation is a great option to take a break from their marriage, considering later reconciliation. For others, separation is necessary as they may depend on the other spouse for social security benefits.
No matter which option you choose, you need to remember that if you have any problems going through your separation or divorce stages, you can ask for legal help by hiring a lawyer. A family law attorney may be of great service whether you’re considering divorce or legal separation.
Why You Should Call a Lawyer After An Accident Involving a Distracted Driver
Distracted driving is prevalent throughout the United States, leading to thousands of accidents and injuries annually. Have you or a loved one recently been involved in an accident with a distracted driver?
If so, consider calling a lawyer. However, you may need clarification on whether a distracted driving accident lawyer is necessary or how they can help you. To clear up any confusion, we will explore why you should call a lawyer if you’ve been in an accident involving a distracted driver.
Proving Distracted Driving
Proving that the other driver was distracted during the accident can be challenging. Distracted driving accident lawyers will know how to navigate these challenges and present the evidence in the most compelling way possible.
A lawyer experienced in distracted driving cases will be familiar with the various forms of evidence necessary to build a strong case. This may include obtaining cell phone records, reviewing surveillance footage, or even finding witnesses who can testify to the driver’s behavior before or during the accident.
Negotiating With Insurance Companies
Insurance companies are notorious for attempting to minimize payouts or deny claims altogether. Skilled distracted driving accident lawyers can help you negotiate with the insurance company to ensure you receive a fair settlement.
They will also be able to identify any tactics the insurance company may use to try to devalue your claim or shift blame onto you and effectively counter those tactics.
In some cases, it may be challenging to determine who is at fault for a car accident, especially if multiple parties are involved. Distracted driving accident lawyers can investigate the accident and analyze the facts to decide who should be liable.
Additionally, if the other party attempts to place partial or total blame on you, a lawyer will be prepared to protect your rights and work towards proving that the distracted driver was the primary cause of the accident.
Ensuring You Receive Proper Compensation
An experienced lawyer will be able to assess the damages in your case and help you understand the actual value of your claim. This includes medical expenses, lost wages, vehicle repair costs, and any pain and suffering you may have experienced due to the accident.
With the assistance of a lawyer, you may fully understand the extent of your damages and could be under-compensated.
Handling Any Legal Deadlines
Often, strict deadlines must be met when filing a personal injury claim. Distracted driving accident lawyers will ensure you meet these deadlines and avoid potential pitfalls that could weaken your case or even cause it to be thrown out.
Additionally, a lawyer can keep track of any necessary paperwork and guide you through the legal process, giving you peace of mind and allowing you to focus on your recovery.
Why You Should Call Distracted Driving Accident Lawyers – In Conclusion
There are numerous reasons to call a lawyer if you’ve been in an accident involving a distracted driver. From proving distracted driving and determining liability to ensuring you receive proper compensation and handling legal deadlines, an experienced and skilled attorney can significantly improve your chances of a successful outcome.
Don’t wait; call distracted driving accident lawyers today if you’ve been in an accident involving a distracted driver; it could make all the difference in the outcome of your case.
How Much Does a Truck Accident Lawyer Usually Cost?
Being involved in a truck accident can be a traumatic experience. But for many, dealing with the aftermath can be much worse.
Truck accident victims with severe injuries are often faced with hefty medical bills, lost income since they’re not working as a result of the injury, and other financial losses.
As such, one of the most important decisions you can make is hiring a semi-truck accident lawyer to help you get the compensation you deserve. However, the cost of hiring one can vary depending on a variety of factors that we’ve listed in this column.
Continue reading to understand these factors so you can make a well-informed decision when it comes to selecting semi-truck accident lawyers.
The complexity of the Case
The complexity of the truck accident case can significantly affect your lawyer’s fees. If the case is complex and involves multiple parties, your lawyer will have to dedicate more time and resources to get the best outcome for you. Additionally, if the case is complicated, it may require more resources in terms of expert witnesses, legal research, and other services that could increase the overall cost.
In any case, it is important to discuss the complexity of the case with your lawyer and make sure that you understand how much it will cost to represent you.
The Lawyer’s Experience and Success Rate
Attorneys with more experience are typically more expensive than those who are just starting out since they may have more contacts and resources that can be used to assist with your case.
Additionally, the success rate of the lawyer can also have an impact on their fees since attorneys with a high success rate have a proven track record of successfully representing clients in similar cases.
Type of Services Needed
The type of services that you need from the truck accident lawyer can also affect the cost. For example, if you need extensive legal services, such as extensive research, expert witnesses, or representation in court, it will cost more than if you only need advice and guidance.
It is important to discuss the type of services that you need with the truck accident lawyer to ensure that you understand the cost of their services.
Contingency or Retainer
The type of payment structure your preferred lawyer uses will affect how much they will charge for their services.
Some lawyers may require a retainer fee upfront, while others may work on a contingency basis. A contingency fee means that the lawyer will only receive a payment if they are successful in getting you a settlement or award while a retainer is a pre-determined cost that ‘books’ a lawyer’s services.
Semi-truck accident lawyers are often hired to help individuals who have been injured in accidents involving semi-trucks. While this may seem like a niche field, hiring a semi-truck accident lawyer can be a difficult decision.
However, understanding the factors that can affect the cost of the lawyer as pointed out above can help you make a more informed decision.
It is important to discuss these factors with the lawyer before hiring them to ensure that you are prepared for the financial aspects of the case.
What Does a Truck Accident Lawyer do?
Commercial trucks legally weigh 164000 pounds. This means they can cause pretty extensive injuries if you are ever involved in an accident with one. With that being said, if you are a victim of a trucking accident, you are probably trying to figure out what your next steps are. Fortunately, a truck lawyer can help determine the party that is liable, gather evidence, negotiate with insurance companies, and much more. Continue reading to learn more about what a truck accident lawyer does and if you should hire one following an accident.
Building a Strong Case
Truck accident attorneys deal with all of the ins and outs of your case, that way you can spend your time recovering. A truck accident lawyer is responsible for taking care of all of the following things:
- Investigating and gathering evidence to support your case. Evidence may include videos, photos, police reports, eyewitness statements, expert testimony, and much more. The more evidence, the better.
- Collect and organize all of your medical expenses as they relate to your injuries. Any other documents are also useful to help prove your loss. Car accident injuries typically require emergency medical intervention in a hospital setting.
- Determine all parties who are liable as well as their insurance companies.
- Handle negotiations with the insurance companies to retrieve a fair settlement for you.
- If need be, take the case to trial if the insurance company fails to reach a fair settlement.
Your duty is to not have to battle with your insurance company to obtain compensation for your losses. An experienced truck accident attorney can take on the adjuster and file all necessary documentation relevant to your case. This enables you to relax and focus on your recovery in the meantime.
What to Look for in a Truck Accident Lawyer
Now that you are familiar with the duties of a truck accident lawyer, here are some qualities you should look for to help you win your case and get you a fair settlement.
Experience with Trucking Accidents
Choosing a truck accident attorney who has won truck accident cases before means a lot. This means that the attorney is knowledgeable about trucking laws and can better approach your case. This leaves very little room for your attorney to make any mistakes.
Excellent Client Reviews
Finding a truck accident attorney with client testimonials to back up his willful duty is impressive. Positive reviews alone shouldn’t be the only reason why you hire a specific attorney. But, the more positive reviews an attorney has, may indicate they went out of their way to help their clients reach a good resolution.
Attorneys who have won many high-profile cases or have been publicly recognized with awards are another good sign. Many law associations only reward a small percentage of their lawyers annually. However, if the attorney you are considering has earned multiple rewards, this is a good sign to hire him.
Good Negotiation Skills
Truck accident attorneys should have strong negotiation skills. Not only should your attorney represent you, but he should also negotiate with your insurance company on your behalf. This process should continue throughout the litigation process.
If the attorney you are considering hiring has a good track record of negotiating and going above and beyond to help their clients, take this as a good sign.
If you or someone you know has suffered injuries as a result of a truck accident, it is time to hire a truck accident attorney. You shouldn’t have to deal with the financial and emotional burden on your own. Truck accident attorneys can investigate your claim, build a strong case, and negotiate with your insurance company to help you receive the compensation you deserve.
A Guide to Criminal Laws in Canada
If you or someone you know has been accused of a crime in Canada, it’s important to understand the criminal justice system. This guide will explain the basics of criminal law in Canada, including the types of crimes and their possible punishments. Understand your rights and what to expect if you’re facing a criminal charge.
What Are the Three Main Types of Crimes in Canada?
Crime takes many forms in Canada, with each type of offense varying in severity and consequences. The three main types of crimes are crimes against the person, property crimes, and public order offenses. Crime against the person encompasses a range of activities such as assault, sexual assault, and homicide.
Property crime includes theft, fraud, and mischief caused to any type of property. Lastly, public order violations refer to criminal activity which is disruptive to the community such as causing disturbances, uttering threats, and harboring criminals.
Different preventative measures have been put into places such as police enforcement and surveillance technology to counteract these kinds of offenses in Canadian society.
How Are Criminal Laws Made in Canada?
Canada has an established set of processes through which criminal laws are created, adopted, and enforced. The Law-Making Process begins when the Government of Canada sends a draft bill to Parliament to be debated and voted on by MPs. That same process is repeated in the Senate before the Governor General gives Royal Assent and the legislation becomes law.
Once enacted, laws are enforced by police agencies, Crown Prosecutors, and Justice Systems across provinces and territories. Canada’s legal system adopts a constructive approach to establishing new criminal laws that involve ongoing dialogue between existing stakeholders like lawmakers, judges, civil society groups, criminal defence lawyer, and other participants in the justice system.
This helps ensure that new or amended criminal laws reflect the values of Canadians while also meeting the needs of relevant communities.
Who Enforces Criminal Laws in Canada?
In Canada, criminal laws are enforced by the police force. Police departments across the country serve to ensure law and order and protect citizens from criminal activity. The Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) is responsible for providing policing services in provinces and territories without their own provincial or territorial police forces.
In addition, there are many local police forces in cities throughout Canada that cooperate with the RCMP to enforce criminal laws. Each province also has its own justice department which is responsible for overseeing all aspects of the criminal justice system, including creating and enforcing laws.
Through their coordinated efforts, these organizations work together to ensure national security and uphold Canadians’ rights and freedoms.
Difference Between an Indictable Offense and a Summary Offense
In Canada, criminal justice procedures distinguish between two types of offenses: summary offenses and indictable offenses. A summary offense is less serious than an indictable offense and therefore carries with it lighter penalties, such as a fine or shorter jail sentence.
Summary charges are tried in provincial court, whereas indictable offenses are handled in the higher-level supreme court. Generally speaking, the more serious the criminal charge (for example murder) the higher level of court it will be heard in; however, this can depend on individual jurisdictions or even cases.
The major determining factor for what kind of offense a crime falls under depends on the severity of the crime and whether it falls under federal or provincial laws.
Most Common Criminal Offenses in Canada
In Canada, criminal offenses vary from province to province and even among cities. But some of the most common offenses include offenses such as theft, impaired driving, obstructing a police officer, drug trafficking, assault, and remaining in a vehicle while intoxicated.
Depending on the nature of the crime and any prior convictions for the same offense, penalties can include fines, imprisonment, or parole restrictions.
Most provinces employ social services interventions like addiction counseling or rehabilitative programming as an alternative to jail time in lesser cases. Regardless of the penalty given for criminal activity, however, offenders are still answerable to Canadian law.
7 Questions to Ask an Immigration Lawyer at the First Meeting
Immigration law is complicated. This is why only experienced and professional immigration attorneys are the best fit. After you have chosen the right immigration lawyer to help you solve your issue, what is next? Next, prepare for the first meeting with the immigration lawyer.
One of the ways to ensure that you and the lawyer speak the same language is to ask the lawyer questions. So, read on to find several questions you can ask an immigration lawyer during the first meeting.
Ask about the previous experience
It is essential that your chosen lawyer is specialized in immigration law and has experience in cases similar to yours. This is a guarantee that you have selected the right lawyer. It is highly recommended that you choose an immigration lawyer with an immigration law specialization and rich experience because this will guarantee capability and expertise when handling your case.
For instance, if you live in Rochester, New York, and intend to choose a lawyer based on your visa issue, you have to seek out immigration lawyers in Rochester who are specialized in visa cases.
Excellent lawyers can refer you to similar cases and the outcomes they achieved for their clients. Additionally, ensure that your lawyer is board certified. You can do this by performing research.
Ask about the best strategy that fits your case
After you have asked the immigration lawyer questions that will show his specialization and are satisfied with the answer, you can proceed to questions regarding your immigration case. During the initial consultation, you can tell the immigration lawyer about your aims and the kind of support you need to get.
When you ask the lawyer about the best strategy that fits your case, the lawyer will ask questions about your immigration history and the documents needed for submitting your application. The immigration lawyer will also check your eligibility and also the possibility of getting the outcome that you desire.
The immigration lawyer would also explain the strategy and process to employ during your case. If you want to understand more, you can ask them the following questions:
- What are your thoughts concerning my case?
- What is my chance of succeeding?
- What is my case timeline?
- What do you need from me to work on my case?
Ask if the lawyer belongs to the American Immigration Lawyers Association
Immigration law is a specialized field. Therefore you must employ the services of a trustworthy and reputable immigration lawyer. This is why you must ask the lawyer if the lawyer is a member of The American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA). A lawyer who is part of this association understands the current immigration updates, regulations, and best practices.
Though the AILA can be an excellent place to get recommendations for an attorney, membership doesn’t equate to the lawyer’s success record or experience. You can also search for lawyers through websites that have essential information and clients’ testimonials for lawyers.
Ask for the language you can communicate with your lawyer
It will be understandable if you don’t feel comfortable speaking English. It can be pretty hard to understand law terminologies, and this can become more complicated if you cannot correctly communicate with your lawyer.
So, you can ask if your lawyer is fluent in your native language. If the lawyer doesn’t speak your language, they can provide you with a native speaker of your language who can help in the interpretation.
Ask how frequently you and the lawyer would be in contact
After getting a lawyer, it is essential to follow your case and remain updated. Sometimes, the immigration process could take months or years before it can be successfully closed. This is another reason you must be able to communicate flawlessly with your lawyer.
You must understand that you are not only seeking a good immigration attorney but an available and approachable lawyer who doesn’t have many cases to deal with. The immigration lawyer should be able to spend time dealing with your case and getting feedback from you.
Ask the lawyer what your case will cost
This is another essential question you must ask your lawyer during the first meeting. When you consult with the lawyer, the lawyer will give you, in detail, an outline of what your case involves. This will enable you to understand the amount of work that is involved.
Therefore you will know the proper timeline of your expectation and what you should do. After this, your lawyer will discuss their charge and tell you what you are expected to pay. You can ask your lawyer to put this writing.
Usually, you cannot find out what it will cost before a consultation. The reason for this is that even immigration cases are usually different, and the level of work and the complexity will determine the price.
You can also ask your lawyer the following questions to understand the cost:
- What mode of payment do you charge? Installments or flat fees?
- What is the total cost of my case?
- Do you charge an additional fee for filing?
- Do you charge for emails, calls, or copies of documents?
When you have a clear understanding of the fee involved, you will be able to make informed decisions.
Ask the lawyer what actions or procedures he will undertake for your case
Another critical question to ask your immigration lawyer is who will file the paperwork and submit it for your case. You can also ask the lawyer who will attend the hearings or interviews for you.
This will let you remove any misunderstanding that might occur, and also, these actions and plans can be an essential part of your timeline.
During your first meeting with your lawyer, the aim is to discuss your case’s details and create a strategy to win your case. This is why you must build lawyer and client relationships and good communication. Additionally, you could make your case outline and get legal advice from an expert immigration lawyer.
But most people don’t know how to prepare for this first meeting. The first thing to do is choose the best lawyer that suits your case because immigration law is broad, and you would need an expert to get a chance of success. The above tips should help you choose the best lawyer for your case.
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