In the state of Georgia, there is a mandatory 30-day waiting period after one spouse serves the other with divorce papers. Since this waiting period is mandatory, even if the other party responds within the 30 days, both parties will still have to wait out the remaining days before they can schedule a hearing date.
There are also two other waiting periods if your spouse is out of state or out of the country. If your spouse currently resides in another state, they will have a 60-day period to respond. If they are in another country, they will have 90 days. However, only the initial 30 days are mandatory, meaning if your spouse responds any time after the first 30 days, you both can proceed with setting a hearing date.
Why is there a Waiting Period?
Georgia has this 30-day waiting period as a buffer in case the parties reconcile before the hearing.
You can make good use of this period, however. With the help of a good attorney, this period can be used to discuss the hearing, gather evidence, build the strongest case possible to protect you and your rights, determine asset evaluations, and contact the other spouse in some circumstances to discuss and maybe try to settle. We can assist you through all of this and more.
What Happens if My Spouse Doesn’t Respond Within the Waiting Period?
If the entire 30-day waiting period expires without a response from the receiving party, the court can enter what is called a “default,” where they can proceed with the hearing without your spouse’s participation.
If you have been served with divorce papers, you need to respond as soon as possible to protect yourself and your rights, as once a default judgment is passed, you will lose the right to object to any of the terms in the petition.
If you have failed to respond within 30 days, do not panic because options are still available. It is important to contact an attorney immediately so they can advise you accordingly.
We Are Here to Help
No matter the stage of your divorce, having the right attorney in your corner can make a world of difference. If you are currently considering whether a divorce is right for you, or if you are looking to set things in motion, we can offer you guidance and our many years’ worth of experience dealing with families and divorces. Contact us today at 404-738-5805 or online to book a consultation.