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What is a Temporary Order?

What is a temporary order in the context of a Georgia Divorce or Family Law Case?
A temporary order is an order from a judge usually made at a temporary hearing and regarding matters such as child custody, child visitation, attorney’s fees, alimony and/or child support payments and the living arrangements for the children and parties.  A temporary order is valid until further order of the court – which is usually the result of a long-term, permanent settlement between the parties or as the result of a final trial.  Usually a hearing for a temporary order can be scheduled by either party or the court; and each party can only have one witness – unless the court grants a motion to have more.

A temporary order may also be granted even if a formal divorce has not been filed yet – as a support issue.  An example of such a case would be a wife filing for a temporary order after her husband left her with no money or no place to stay.  The purpose of a temporary hearing and order is to protect both parties’ right throughout the duration of a divorce, separation or family law case.

How long does a temporary order remain effective?
A temporary order usually is in effect until the main case is completed and the final divorce decree is granted, at which point the permanent order that has been decided on through court is implemented.  However, if the situation changes, there could be a second temporary hearing.  Subsequent temporary orders are rare but always possible if there are changed circumstances warranting a new temporary order.  Examples could include: arrest or incarceration of one or the parties, job loss, foreclosure of one of a parties home, drug use, abuse, etc.

How can a temporary order influence the final result in a case?
It is important to bear in mind that if a judge sees a situation as working favorably temporarily, he or she could be more inclined to grant similar conditions permanently.  Conversely, adverse behavior in this temporary period could negatively affect the outcome of the trial.  For example, if you are granted physical custody of the children at the temporary hearing, and it is not working in the best interest of the children, your primary custody could be revoked and given to your spouse at the final hearing.

The attorneys at Coleman Legal Group, LLC are experienced in the settlement and litigation of temporary orders.  If you anticipate the need for a temporary order or have been summoned to a hearing for a temporary order, you can contact our office at 770-609-1247 to speak with an attorney and see what your options are.

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