person reading Georgia Residency Requirements

What Are Georgia Residency Requirements for Divorce?

Under Georgia state laws, either you or your spouse must have been a state resident for at least 6 months prior to filing. Additionally, you must file in the Superior Court of the county in which your spouse resides.

If your spouse lives in another state, you may file the paperwork in the court of the county where you reside. As long as one of the spouses meets the legal residency requirements in Georgia, another one can file for divorce in the state.

Basic Georgia Divorce Requirements

Filing for divorce in Georgia, the couple needs to meet the following requirements:

    • Residency.

In Georgia, residency is established as soon as one of the spouses has lived in the state for 6 months or more. It is also necessary to file in the county where the non-filing spouse lives.

    • Divorce grounds.

When initiating a fault-based litigation, a filing party may cite one of the 13 grounds for divorce. In a no-fault case, it is necessary to state that the marriage is irretrievably broken.

    • Waiting period.

There is a 30-days waiting period as soon as the case is filed with the court. Under Georgia divorce laws, the marriage dissolution case cannot be reviewed by the judge or finalized before this time elapses.

What If I Do Not Meet the Residency Requirements?

Note that it is not a problem if you are not a resident of the state while your wife or husband is. Under these circumstances, you will have to bring the forms to the court of the county where they live. If none of you are Georgia residents, you have two options:
  • Waiting
  • Due to the rules of residence jurisdiction, a court in Georgia will be unable to open a divorce case for you until you OR your spouse lived in the state for 6 consecutive months.
  • Filing for divorce out of the state.
  • If you or your soon-to-be ex meet the residency requirements in another state, it might be best that you file your case there. Divorcing with children under 18, you will likely have to file in their home state to ensure that a court has jurisdiction to make child-related decisions in your proceedings. If you believe that your case is exceptional, and you should be allowed to file in Georgia, it is necessary to discuss it with a lawyer.
Get Started Now

Create a free account to check your eligibility for divorce. Preparing legal forms is never easy, but we can help you on every step of the process.

What If My Spouse Does Not Meet the Residency Requirements?

If your spouse is the one who does not meet the residency requirements but you do, go to the court of your county of living to file there. The court may establish jurisdiction over your husband or wife if:

  • They own property in Georgia.
  • You lived in the state as a family and they still live there.

Alternatively, your spouse may acknowledge that the court has jurisdiction over them voluntarily.