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Separation in Georgia

How can T.I and Tiny help you figure out separation in Georgia? By looking at their example. T.I. and Tiny are public figures constantly in the public eye. Most recently due to their separation and pending divorce. As residents of Georgia, T.I. and Tiny have limited options in terms of separation. In some circumstances, separation is beneficial in lieu of getting a divorce. Couples may want time to figure out if divorce is the best recourse however responsibilities such as children and bills have to also be figured out as well. Even though Georgia does not recognize legal separation, Couples do have two courses of action if they decide to live apart.

1) Informal Separation.

Couples who have not decided to divorce but for a variety of reasons decided to live apart. It may benefit couples who:

  1. Need to retain certain military benefits

  2. Need to take advantage of potential tax benefits from filing jointly.

  3. Need health insurance

  4. Meet the 10-year requirement for social security benefits.

It may be a good option to avoid litigation for certain couples. If, T.I and Tiny decided prior to filing divorce that it would better for them to hold on to the benefits of being married without actually going through the process an informal separation could have been a benefit to them.

2) Separate Maintenance[1]

Georgia does allow for couples who desire to live separately and remain married while also making determinations of alimony, child support and child custody. It is important to remember that this does not dissolve the marriage. It may be an option for couples who have religious restriction on divorce, when of the parties has not resided in Georgia for a period of 6 months prior to an action, or if a couple wants to a trial period of living a part but want clarity about visitation after separation. [2]

This is not an option for couples who have been residing together for long a period of time without being married. [3] Couples must be legally married in order to file a Separate Maintenance petition. This may have been a good option for a couple like T.I. and Tiny who have children and a lot of assets to divide.

There are many other alternatives to litigation if you or a couple want to explore options please contact Juitt-Jackson Law Firm, LLC at our office to schedule a consultation.

[1] O.C.G.A. 19-6-10

[2] O.C.G.A. § 19-6-1 et. seq, Breeden v. Breeden, 202 Ga. 740 (1947)

[3] Boone v. Boone, 192 Ga. 579 (1941).

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