Georgia couples who are ending their marriage need to understand the various financial aspects of divorcing. By being better informed about what to expect, people may work towards minimizing the negative financial consequences they might otherwise suffer.
The first step is to understand how property is divided. Georgia is an equitable distribution state. This means that courts divide marital property in manners that judges determine are and fair. This does not necessarily mean that the marital property will be divided equally. Instead, the focus is on helping the parties to enjoy a standard of living that is as close as possible to what they had before the divorce.
In addition to a distribution of assets, people should also understand that their debts will similarly be divided. They might be able to agree to take on certain debts in exchange for additional assets. People should be aware that debts on which their names remain are still considered to be their responsibility by their creditors even if the other party has agreed to take them over. Taxes are also an important consideration.
Spousal and child support may also be at issue in divorces. Child support is not taxable income and cannot be claimed as a deduction on a tax return. Spousal support is income to the recipient, however, and can be claimed as a deduction. People might want to discuss their finances and debts with their family law attorneys. Instead of having the court make property division and other decisions, the parties may want to have their respective attorneys assist in negotiating a comprehensive settlement agreement.