Bill would extend wait for divorces - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Bill would extend wait for divorces

January 20, 2006

Atlanta - Married couples with children who want to divorce will have to wait four times longer under a bill moving through the state Legislature.

The bill, sponsored by  Sen. Mitch Seabaugh of Sharpsburg, would extend the waiting period for a divorcing couple with children from 30 days to four months.

The 120-day waiting period would begin either at the time of separation or at the divorce filing, whichever comes first. Georgia law now requires a 30-day waiting period to obtain an uncontested divorce.

A divorcing couple with kids also would be required to attend a three-hour counseling course on the effect of divorce on families.

The bill would not affect divorcing couples who do not have children, and it has a provision that would waive the waiting period for victims of domestic violence.

State Rep. Mary Margaret Oliver of Decatur said she supports the mandatory class for divorcing parents, but opposes the waiting period provision in the bill.