Married couples in Georgia may not believe that they might become one of the 2 million divorces that occur each year. However, it is important that they understand the divorce process and the importance of planning before, during and after a divorce.

There are three stages of divorce. They include filing the required paperwork; discovery, in which research is conducted into the financial backgrounds of both spouses; and disposition. For couples who do not want to go through a trial to end their marriage, they have multiple options. Depending on the circumstances of their divorce, a collaborative divorce or mediation may be viable options.

Proper research should be conducted before filing for divorce. Individuals should become familiar with the divorce laws of the state in which their divorce will take place. They should learn the timeline for a divorce and how long they have to be separated from a spouse in order to start the divorce process. It is also imperative to conduct thorough research on attorneys to learn how much they charge and whether they charge on a retainer basis, by the hour or with any other method.

Before a divorce begins, it is an ideal time to begin planning for life after the divorce ends. Individuals should determine what their financial and personal goals are for the future and what type of life they see for themselves after the divorce is finalized.

A family law attorney may assist divorcing clients by considering the factors of the divorce and recommending which legal options may be most appropriate to pursue to obtain a divorce. In cases of contentious divorce, litigation may be used to resolve disputes and obtain favorable settlement terms regarding spousal support, child custody, the division of marital assets, child support and other divorce legal issues.