Saturday, March 24, 2012

What Is A Temporary Hearing?

A temporary hearing is unique to family law. It is not a full trial, but a quick hearing with the judge. The temporary hearing can be held in open court or in the judge’s chambers. The purpose of this hearing is to determine what will happen while a divorce is pending. A temporary hearing can address:

  • Where the parties will live
  • Who will stay in the martial home
  • Who is responsible for covering bills
  • Who will keep which vehicle
  • Will there be alimony
  • Will one party pay the other’s attorney’s fees
  • Who the children will live with
  • When the other parent will have visitation with the children
  • What amount of child support will be paid
During a temporary hearing, both attorneys present a brief overview of the case, call witnesses to the stand, and argue their case to the judge. There is no jury involved in a temporary hearing, although there may be other parties in the Courtroom. The temporary hearing is limited to two live witnesses, the party and one other; however, affidavits are often submitted and used in temporary hearings. Affidavits are sworn statements by others who have information related to the divorce.

A temporary hearing is brief; it is not a time to bring up the details of everything involved in a divorce, but rather a time to give an overview of the important points to the judge. Again, the purpose of the hearing is for the judge to make a decision regarding temporary issues while the final divorce is pending. 

After a temporary hearing, the judge will issue a temporary order that will be in effect until a final divorce is granted. In Georgia, the temporary order does not dictate the final order. A temporary hearing and a final hearing are not governed by the same rules of law; however, it is important to be fully prepared for the temporary hearing because the tone of the hearing may set the course for a divorce proceeding.

If you have a temporary hearing scheduled it is recommended that you have legal guidance. Call The Law Office of Christine M Bechtold, LLC at 770-466-2700 to set-up your free initial consultation.

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