Monday, December 31, 2012

Divorce, Loneliness, and the Holidays


As Augusta, GA divorce attorneys, we are fully aware that the holidays can be difficult for some parties who are going though a divorce, along with their families. Children must frequently divide their time between two households and parents must often spend time without them. People are lonely. As Augusta divorce lawyers, we must never forget that.

Here's hoping that, if you are going through a divorce, you will still find peace and happiness during the holidays. Our family of lawyers at the Goolsby Law Firm, LLC, also wish you and your family a happy new year!

Friday, December 21, 2012

Divorce and the Holidays: Why Do Some People Wait?

[Depiction of Lady Justice from ehow.com]
As divorce lawyers in Augusta, Georgia, we are accustomed to helping people with their divorce cases throughout the year. But while we don't have any statistics to support it, it appears to us that, generally, divorces slow down somewhat during the holidays.

Maybe that conclusion seems obvious, or logical, to you. But what do you think are some of the common reasons why some people wait until after the holidays to file for a divorce? Here are just a few of the possible explanations, from our perspective, as Augusta, Ga divorce lawyers.

In some divorce cases, some people simply do not have the financial resources to go to court during the holidays. In fact, some folks will wait until after they receive their income tax refunds, in January or February, before they seek help from a divorce attorney. In other divorce cases, involving children, other people want to wait to file after the holidays and give their kids one more peaceful Christmas.

Divorces can be difficult for everyone involved. Here's hoping that, no matter for what reason people are waiting to file for a divorce from their worthless spouse, "Sluggo," they will find peace throughout the holidays.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

The Goolsby Law Firm Brag Board

[The Goolsby Law Firm, 233 Davis Rd., Augusta, GA]

Recently, I included a post in which I bragged about my second son Blake's passing the Georgia bar exam and joining our Augusta, Georgia family law firm. Today, I hope you don't mind that, as a proud father, I once again want to brag a little bit--this time about my third son, Zachary. Zach is home for Christmas break and has now passed the midway point of law school! 

In other words, Zach has three semesters down and only three more semesters to go until graduation! Then, I believe we will be the only law firm in the history of the State of Georgia composed of a parent and three children--practicing law together--who are attorneys!

As Augusta, GA lawyers, we primarily handle divorces, child custody cases, adoptions, personal injury cases, and criminal cases, in both state and federal court. I believe I am the only former twenty year federal prosecutor in the Augusta and Evans, Georgia area. I have handled some of the largest, most complex fraud and public corruption cases in Georgia and U.S. history.

My first two lawyer sons, Richard (Ric) Goolsby, Jr. and Blake Goolsby, with whom I presently practice law in Augusta, both graduated from Mercer Law School. My third son, Zach Goolsby, presently attends the University of Georgia School of Law, which is where I also graduated. He and I will be the two "Double Dawgs" in our family law firm!

So, thank you for understanding and allowing me--a proud father--to brag once again! 

Congrats, Zach! We are very proud of you and look forward to your joining us at The Goolsby Law Firm! 

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Celebrity Separations and Divorces: Lisa Whelchel

[The Facts of Life Image from wikipedia]
How many of you are fans of the original reality television series Survivor? Did you see last night's episode which featured family visits for cast members? If so, you saw the emotional turmoil on the face of cast member Lisa Whelchel when she ran to her visiting brother's arms! Of course, many of you will remember her from the 1980's television series, The Facts of Life, in which she played Blair.

Not only has the Survivor experience been difficult for Ms. Whelchel, but also it apparently has otherwise been a tough year for her, too. According to various news reports, she is presently dealing with West Nile Virus. In addition, according to reports, Ms. Whelchel, a singer, song-writer, and speaker at Women of Faith Christian conferences, also got a divorce earlier this year.

We still do not know whether she won or how she did on Survivor, but here's hoping that Ms. Whelchel will overcome her illness and deal with any problems associated with her divorce. She seems like a genuinely kind, gentle person. As she has clearly learned, like on Survivor, real life can be tough, too. Sicknesses and divorces can happen to anybody. And those are the real facts of life which we all must face, aren't they?  

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Celebrity Breakups and Divorces: Demi Moore and Ashton Kutcher

[Photo of Demi Moore from wikipedia]
As Augusta, Georgia divorce lawyers, we are often asked: how long does it take to get a divorce?  Well, the answer is: it depends! In other words, there are a lot of factors which can affect how long it takes for a divorce to become final.

For example, have you followed any of the news reports about the separation of actors Demi Moore and Ashton Kutcher? According to various news reports, the celebrity couple separated over a year ago and yet, reportedly, their divorce has never been finalized.

Even in a typical Georgia divorce, there are a number of factors, such as whether it is a contested or uncontested divorce, or whether or not the couple is fighting over child custody, which can determine how long the court proceedings can take.

A simple, uncontested divorce can be completed in as little as a couple of months. However, some tough, contested divorces can take a year or longer to complete!

We recommend that you discuss this question, along with all your rights and options, with your own divorce attorney. Hopefully, your divorce won't take as long to complete as some celebrity breakups!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Celebrity Separations and Divorces: Danica Patrick

[Photo of Danica Patrick from wikipedia]
Are you a NASCAR fan? Have you heard the news? According to various news reports, popular NASCAR driver, model, and advertising guru Danica Patrick has announced her plans for divorce from her husband of seven years, Paul Hospathal.

As an Augusta, GA divorce lawyer, I have seen a little bit of everything. But I haven't before seen a divorcing party announce his or her divorce via Facebook, which is how Ms. Patrick informed her fans about this news. Here's hoping that these divorcing parties find peace and happiness, on the track and off.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Uncontested Divorce in Augusta, GA: What It Really Means and Costs!


As Augusta, GA divorce attorneys, we get telephone calls and email inquiries every day about the cost or price of an uncontested divorce in Georgia. We gladly offer free consultations with folks who need information about both uncontested and contested divorces.

Maybe it is time for a quick recap about the difference between an uncontested divorce and a contested divorce. In short, generally, an uncontested divorce, (from our perspective as Augusta, Georgia divorce lawyers), means that your worthless spouse, "Sluggo," will not only agree to all your terms, (and those terms must be in accordance with what our judges will readily approve), but also that he will fully cooperate and promptly sign all the divorce documents which we will prepare for you.

In short, if Sluggo will fully cooperate and promptly sign everything we prepare, then we can try to help you obtain a much more affordable, simple uncontested divorce for as little as $500, plus costs.

However, if Sluggo refuses, for whatever reasons, to fully cooperate and promptly sign all the documents, then, by our definition, it is a contested divorce, which can easily cost several thousands of dollars, (at a minimum). 

So, I trust that you can see that an uncontested divorce does not simply mean that your spouse does not contest getting a divorce. It means more. It means, at a minimum, that he will also fully cooperate and promptly sign all the divorce documents.

Of course, every divorce is different. Some divorces involve alimony, child custody or child support issues, and other divorces do not. So, it is important that you discuss your own divorce situation with your own divorce lawyer! Then, if you choose, you can go ahead and "make Sluggo's day!"

Thursday, November 8, 2012

The Goolsby Law Firm Brag Board!

[Photo of The Goolsby Law Firm, 233 Davis Rd., Augusta, GA]

Please allow me to brag a little bit today. My second son, Blake Goolsby, has successfully passed the Georgia Bar exam and has now been sworn in as a licensed Georgia attorney! Blake has now joined his brother, Richard H. Goolsby, Jr., and me, (his father, Richard H. Goolsby, Sr.), in our family law practice, here, in Augusta, GA. We will continue to handle Augusta area divorce cases, personal injury cases, criminal law cases, and other general litigation -- but now, our family of lawyers is just a little bit bigger!

Now, I hope you can understand why I am so happy today!

Friday, November 2, 2012

Celebrity Separations and Divorces: Anna Trebunskaya and Jonathan Roberts

[Photo of Anna Trebunskaya from wikipedia]
Have you heard the sad news about yet another celebrity marriage reportedly biting the dust? This time, according to various news reports, the split is occurring between Dancing with the Stars professional dancers Anna Trebunskaya and Jonathan Roberts. The couple is reportedly divorcing after a nine year marriage.

While no one knows, or needs to know, what happened here, we have discussed many times before in this divorce blog about the unique stressors which can break up Hollywood marriages. Here's hoping that Trebunskaya and Roberts can each find happiness in the future.



Friday, October 26, 2012

How To Deal With The Marital Home In A Divorce


Since I began this week with a joke about how to deal with a marital home in a divorce, I thought that maybe this next post should focus on some real, practical tips for you to discuss about this topic with your own Georgia divorce lawyer.

First of all, this discussion assumes that we are referring to marital property; that is, a home acquired during the marriage and not as a result of an inheritance by one of the parties in the divorce.

Second, here are a couple of practical tips to consider: If the marital home is in both names, but one of you wants to keep it, then it is important that you consider how to get it out of the other party's name. In other words, it generally would be unfair, if one party is going to keep the home, for the other party to have their credit tied up over the next 20 or so years until the mortgage is paid off. Therefore, you should discuss with your divorce attorney the idea of including in a settlement agreement, (or arguing before a judge), a provision requiring the party who is keeping the house to refinance, (and get the mortgage/property out of the other side's name), within a specified period of time. Also, while that party is refinancing, they may also be able to borrow money to cover the other party's share of any equity, if that is appropriate. Finally, you should also discuss with your own divorce lawyer the idea that, if the other party does not, or cannot, refinance within the specified time, then the house probably must be listed and sold.

Again, every divorce is different. So, please discuss all these issues about equitable division of marital property with your own divorce lawyer.

I hope this post gave you some good practical information and tips! But I think we will both agree that it wasn't as funny as the divorce "joke of the day!" Have a nice weekend!

Monday, October 22, 2012

A Divorce "Joke of the Day" About Property Division


As you know, I am a divorce lawyer in Augusta, Georgia. On Friday, I attended a seminar about various Georgia divorce law issues, including alimony, adultery, child custody, and equitable property division.

While we realize, as divorce attorneys, that divorce is no laughing matter, we thought it might be a good way to start the week by sharing with you one of the jokes about divorce we heard at the seminar. The joke is about how to equitably divide a house in a divorce. Here goes:

A man going through a divorce was explaining to his friend about how the judge had equitably divided the marital home. "The judge said he was going to divide it equally. He gave her everything inside the house and I got everything left outside it."

I hope your week goes well!

Saturday, October 13, 2012

What is the Price or Cost of an Uncontested Divorce in Augusta, GA?


As Augusta, Georgia divorce attorneys, (i.e. our father and son attorneys handle divorce and child custody cases throughout Richmond and Columbia County, and the CSRA), we receive telephone calls and email inquiries every single day concerning the cost or price of an uncontested Georgia divorce. We proudly offer free initial consultations in which you can talk with a divorce lawyer about your potential divorce case without any charge. Our Augusta family law firm also strives to offer some of the lowest, most affordable legal fees in the Augusta, Evans, Richmond and Columbia County, GA areas. 

Since we receive so many questions about it, I thought it might be helpful to discuss again the topic of how much does an uncontested, (as opposed to contested), divorce generally cost. Of course, you should first be aware that the costs of an uncontested divorce generally include the divorce attorney's fee, along with the cost of filing the uncontested divorce documents. In short, the going rate, here, for an uncontested divorce generally ranges from $500 to $1500, plus a court filing fee of $205. 

At the Goolsby Law Firm, LLC, depending upon the circumstances, we generally charge a legal fee at the low end of that range for an uncontested divorce. In addition, in uncontested divorce cases involving children, you should also expect to spend at least another $30 to $40 for the cost of attending a children of divorce seminar, which is court-mandated. Your divorce lawyer will be able to provide you with information about each of these costs.

I hope this information helps! Please feel free to call the Goolsby Law Firm, LLC at (706) 863-5281 for a free consultation. Have a great weekend!

Monday, October 8, 2012

Celebrity Separations and Divorces: Arnold Schwarzenegger and Maria Shriver

[Photo of Arnold Schwarzenegger from wikipedia]
Have you heard about Total Recall, the new "tell-all" book by actor and former Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger? Look, as a busy Augusta, Georgia divorce lawyer, I will acknowledge that I haven't read the book. But I have heard his promotions of it on his current book tour.

According to various reports, while the book focuses on other aspects of the "Governator's" life, it also contains his version of what transpired with his housekeeper, which yielded a son, while he was married to Maria Shriver. As you know, following the revelation of the affair, Schwarzenegger and Shriver filed for divorce.

What do you think about celebrities who write such tell-all books? Is it their right to do so? Should they do so? Why or why not?

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Is the Cheapest Divorce Lawyer Always the Best?


So, your worthless spouse, "Sluggo," has been up to no good again and, this time, you have caught him runnin' around on you with Doris, the new waitress down at the local diner! So, you have decided to get a divorce, once and for all. Where do you begin? How do you find a good, cheap divorce lawyer? What should you do?

As an Augusta, Georgia divorce attorney, I recommend that you begin by talking with family and friends about recommendations of good, experienced divorce lawyers near you. You can also check the telephone book, or check online, to find divorce lawyers in your town. Next, we recommend that you should make appointments with prospective attorneys, meet with them, and ask good questions about their experience and about your divorce before deciding which family law attorney should represent you in your divorce case.

But take it from me, a divorce lawyer in Augusta, Georgia, you should never, never make your decision about which attorney to choose based solely upon who is the cheapest lawyer! This lesson is particularly true if important issues, such as child custody, alimony, or property division, may arise in your divorce! 

So, go ahead, if you choose, and "make Sluggo's day" by filing for a divorce, but we recommend that the cost or price should be only one of many factors in selecting a good divorce lawyer. After all, as with every other decision we make in life, sometimes we get what we pay for!  Don't you agree?

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Celebrity Marriages and Divorces: Mark and Dianne Burnett

[Photo of Producer Mark Burnett from wikipedia]
How many of you are fans of the reality t.v. show Survivor, which premieres again tomorrow night? Just as I have "survived" many tough divorce cases in the courtroom as an Augusta, Georgia divorce lawyer, I also am a fan of Survivor

Like so many other busy Hollywood celebrities, Mark Burnett, the British television producer who is responsible for producing Survivor, (along with a number of other television shows, such as The Apprentice), had previously experienced, or survived, a divorce. According to wikipedia, Mr. Burnett and his previous spouse, Dianne, divorced in 2003. Both he and Dianne have since each re-married.

Burnett's ex-wife, Dianne, who appeared as a guest on Fox and Friends this morning, is a prolific author, entrepreneur, and philanthropist, in her own right. 

Just as these talented people have experienced a divorce, if you are going through one, you can be a survivor, too!

Friday, September 7, 2012

Celebrity Separations and Breakups: Chipper Jones

[Photo of Chipper Jones from wikipedia]
As we have discussed before in this blog about divorce, being a celebrity can present unique challenges for a marriage. It is also interesting to see how various celebrities facing marital problems react to the media spotlight.  Some celebrities shun the media attention; others seem to enjoy the media focus.

In my opinion, Atlanta Braves baseball star Chipper Jones and his spouse have handled matters in the proper way. In short, while various media outlets reported earlier this year that he and his spouse had separated, since then, little or nothing has been reported by either party. And that is the way that such matters should be handled --i.e. privately, between them and their divorce lawyers -- in my opinion!

What do you think?

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

"Equitable" Property or Debt Division Doesn't Always Mean "Equal"


In this blog about Georgia divorce, as Augusta, Georgia divorce lawyers, we often attempt to give you good, practical tips and information about divorce for you to discuss with your own divorce attorney.

For instance, today, I want to talk a little bit about equitable property or debt division in a divorce. In other words, you may have wondered whether or not a divorce judge will simply divide everything down the middle. The simple answer is...as you might expect from a divorce lawyer...it depends!

In other words, in some cases, if one party's income is substantially higher than the other party's, then it might not be fair to split the marital debt evenly. Also, you would need to discuss with your own divorce attorney the potential impact of adultery, or another fault ground, on such issues as alimony and equitable property division. For instance, if your worthless spouse, "Sluggo," has been running around with Gladys, the new waitress down at the diner, then you and your divorce lawyer may essentially argue that Sluggo should end up with none of the assets and all of the debt!

So, you see, in a divorce, "equitable" does not always mean "equal." In some divorce cases, each party may ultimately receive about one-half of the assets, or one-half of the debts to pay. But because each divorce case is different, it is important for you to discuss with your divorce attorney all the facts, along with your all rights and options, in obtaining an equitable, or fair, resolution.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Augusta, GA Divorce Lawyers: Free Consultations


As Augusta, Georgia divorce attorneys -- a father and two sons practicing law together -- we generally offer free initial consultations.  In other words, every day, as Augusta divorce lawyers, we talk with people and try to answer all their questions about divorce, including, among other things, issues about child custody, child visitation, alimony, and equitable property and debt division.

While we still have to make a living, we are proud that we can and do offer this service -- and our time -- at no cost.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Celebrity Separations and Divorces: Evander and Candi Holyfield

[Photo of Evander Holyfield from wikipedia]
Did you hear the news?  According to various news reports, the divorce of former boxing heavyweight champion Evander Holyfield from his (ex-)spouse, Candi, became final recently here in Georgia.

I have always been a big fan of Holyfield, both inside and outside the ring. Once, while standing in line for a sporting event at the civic center, here in Augusta, Georgia, I unintentionally bumped a man in front of me. As I turned around to apologize, I immediately recognized that it was Mr. Holyfield who I had jostled! Thankfully, he was very gracious and even gave one of my sons his autograph!

Here's hoping that Mr. Holyfield and his ex will soon get beyond any problems and find happiness.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Divorce Lawyer Advertising, Or How To Find A Good Divorce Lawyer


As you may know from earlier posts, we are father and son divorce lawyers who practice law together in Augusta, Georgia.  In this divorce blog, among other  things, we offer practical tips and information about Georgia divorce law for you to discuss with your own divorce attorneys.  We also sometimes talk about issues presented by celebrity separations and divorces.

As an Augusta, GA divorce attorney, I never cease to be amazed at how our clients find us.  Sometimes, we receive referrals from previous divorce clients, or other people we know.  Other times, folks find us in the telephone book, or through the internet, or even through this divorce blog.

As divorce attorneys, we must frequently re-evaluate how we choose to advertise, or get the word out, about our Augusta law firm.  It appears that things are in transition from the old "let your fingers do the walking through the yellow pages," to a new approach of finding a divorce lawyer through the internet.

Which method of advertising, i.e. telephone book yellow pages, or the internet, would be the best way to provide information about our divorce/family law firm to potential divorce clients "out there?" What do you think is the best way to find a good, inexpensive divorce lawyer in Augusta, Georgia!?

Monday, July 30, 2012

"Cheap" Divorce Attorneys in Augusta GA


Do you bloggers "out there" ever check to see what key words bring folks to your blogs? I have noticed that we, at the Goolsby Law Firm, LLC, (see our law firm's website here), sometimes receive visits to our sites from people looking for "cheap divorce lawyers in Augusta, Georgia." Should this make our divorce lawyer law firm happy or sad?!

I guess it depends upon which definition of the word "cheap" you go with!  For instance, according to the free online dictionary, one definition of "cheap" would refer to a divorce attorney who is "relatively low in cost," or "inexpensive."  I like that definition! And I believe it applies to us, because we attempt to make our services as Georgia divorce lawyers affordable, low in cost, or relatively inexpensive.

But according to another definition of "cheap," it would refer to a divorce lawyer who is "of poor quality," or "stingy." Naturally, we do not accept that definition of the divorce attorneys at our Augusta, Georgia law firm! We always try to give good, personal service, in divorce or child custody cases, at a low cost. We also offer free initial consultations.

In any event, no matter how you came to visit our divorce blog, or our Augusta, GA divorce law firm, we welcome you and hope to provide you with some good, general information and tips for you to discuss with your own divorce lawyer.  And this is better than cheap. It is free!

Friday, July 27, 2012

Celebrity Break-ups and Divorces: Lena Headey

[Photo of Lena Headey from wikipedia]
After several posts about practical tips and general information about divorce, let's finish up the week with another post about celebrity separations and divorces.

Are you familiar with Lena Headey, the star of the hit HBO series dealing with medieval fantasy, Game of Thrones?  Well, maybe you will also recall some of her other work, such as playing Queen Gorgo in the manly war movie, 300.

According to various news reports, Ms. Headey filed for divorce earlier this week, following a five-year marriage, from her musician spouse, Peter Loughran.  They reportedly have one son.

As we have discussed before, sometimes, being a celebrity can clearly add unique stressors to a marriage.  Don't you agree? Here's hoping that this couple can amicably work through any remaining issues in their divorce with the help of their respective divorce lawyers.

Monday, July 23, 2012

When is Your Divorce Final?


As Augusta, GA divorce lawyers, we have discussed before in this divorce blog the fact that you should not start "foolin' around," date, or even visit online dating sites, until your divorce is final. But do you really understand when your divorce from your worthless spouse, "Sluggo," is actually final?

The simple answer to this question is that your Georgia divorce is generally not final until after the judge has actually signed a final divorce decree. In other words, having your divorce attorney to file for a divorce is NOT the same as getting a final divorce decree, (which generally comes at the end of the divorce case). 
You might be surprised as to how many calls we receive from folks who fail to understand this important distinction!

Of course, you should discuss this matter, like all your other questions about divorce, with your own divorce lawyer! And like we have also cautioned before, please don't start dating until after you consult with your divorce attorney, and until after your divorce is final!

Monday, July 16, 2012

Augusta Georgia Divorce Lawyers Offering Free Initial Consultations

As I indicated in the last post, we are Augusta, Georgia divorce attorneys who provide, in this divorce blog, some good, practical tips and information about Georgia divorce for you to discuss with your own divorce lawyer.  And here is another thing which we, at the Goolsby Law Firm, LLC, offer:  a free initial consultation.

Some divorce attorneys will reportedly charge you several hundred dollars to simply answer a few questions about your separation or divorce.  But we, at the Goolsby Law Firm, (father and son divorce attorneys), are willing to talk with you and attempt to give you some good, general information about a Georgia divorce at no charge! We do it every day!

If you would like to talk with an Augusta, GA divorce lawyer about a Georgia divorce, please feel free to simply call us today at (706) 863-5281 for a free consultation.

Monday, July 9, 2012

What is the Price or Cost of a Divorce in Georgia?


As Augusta, Georgia divorce lawyers, we attempt to provide some good, practical tips and information for you to discuss with your own divorce lawyer. We also sometimes blog about celebrity divorces and try to keep things entertaining, or interesting!

Today, let's focus on some more practical tips. One of the most common questions which we receive, as divorce attorneys, is: How much will it cost to get a divorce?

The answer is that it depends upon whether or not the divorce will be simple and uncontested.  In other words, if your worthless spouse, "Sluggo," will fully cooperate and agree to all your terms, and if he will promptly sign all the divorce documents without any issues or problems, then we may, in many simple, uncontested divorce cases, be able to handle your divorce for as low as $500.00 in legal fees, plus costs, (which includes a court filing fee of $205.00).

Of course, if Sluggo proves to be difficult, or spiteful, and if he refuses to fully cooperate and sign all the documents, then the divorce becomes contested, which means that the price will likely run into several thousand dollars, at a minimum.

Again, we recommend that you retain your own divorce attorney and discuss all the facts and your questions, along with all your rights and options.  Here's hoping you have a great week and that Sluggo will be cooperative, if you elect to get a divorce!

Friday, June 29, 2012

Celebrity Marriages and Divorces: Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes

[Photo of Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes from wikipedia]
Say it ain't so!  Various news reports indicate that, earlier today, actress Katie Holmes filed for divorce from her actor husband, Tom Cruise. The celebrity couple has been married for about five years. They have one daughter, Suri. Ms. Holmes is reportedly seeking primary physical custody. 

This would be the third divorce for Cruise who reportedly turns fifty next week. 

Cruise also has two children from a previous marriage to actress Nicole Kidman. He was also previously married to and divorced from actress Mimi Rogers. 

As we have discussed before in this divorce blog, celebrities have problems just like everyone else. Here's hoping that both Cruise and Holmes are able to work through this tough situation, one way or the other, without the full media spotlight being focused on them.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Celebrity Marriages and Divorces: Nora Ephron

[Photo of Nora Ephron from  wikipedia]
Have you heard the sad news?  A very talented American screenwriter, producer, and director, Nora Ephron, died yesterday from pneumonia, which was reportedly a complication from leukemia. Ms. Ephron often wrote about the trials and relationships between men and women.  She also experienced both marriage and divorce in her own lifetime, including a previous divorce from journalist Carl Bernstein.

But that's enough about divorce. Today, I mainly just wanted to acknowledge her incredible contributions to our culture.  While she is responsible for writing the scripts for, or producing, many classic movies, one of my favorites is the 1993 film, Sleepless in Seattle.

What are some of your favorite Nora Ephron films?

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Dating and Divorce: When Can You Date?


As Augusta, Georgia divorce attorneys, we often receive inquiries, both to our Augusta law firm and to this divorce blog, in which folks are asking us questions about when or whether they can begin dating, while their divorce case is pending.  We consistently, authoritatively, and unquestionably always tell them: NO, you cannot, should not, and must not date while your divorce is pending!  In other words, as Georgia divorce lawyers, we generally recommend that you should wait until the ink on your divorce decree is dry BEFORE you start dating, or even playing the field.

While every divorce case is different, and while you should also discuss this matter with your own divorce lawyer, as Georgia divorce lawyers, we would also point out that, in many divorce cases, there could be serious negative consequences if you begin dating, or start going to dating sites, while your divorce is still pending.  Technically, you are still married, (until the final divorce decree is signed), so, technically, "fooling around" would be adultery.  And as we have discussed before, please recall that proof of adultery, in the State of Georgia, carries with it a number of deleterious consequences, including potential impact on divorce issues involving alimony and property divisions, and, in some cases, even child custody.

Again, we recommend that you consult with your own divorce attorney about whether it is okay to date!

So, that is why, if you ever contact the Goolsby Law Firm, in Augusta, Georgia, and ask us questions concerning when it is okay to date, you can expect us to tell you that you should wait until after your divorce is final!

Monday, June 18, 2012

Celebrity Separations and Divorces: Chipper Jones

[Photo of Atlanta Braves' Chipper Jones from wikipedia]
According to various news reports, Atlanta Braves third baseman Chipper Jones and his wife, Sharon, have reportedly separated. Jones is in the final year of a successful 19 year career with the Braves organization and should be headed to the Baseball Hall of Fame.  Jones and his wife have three sons. Jones also reportedly has another son by a previous marriage.

As Augusta, Georgia divorce lawyers, we have discussed before in this divorce blog some of the problems confronted by many celebrities in their marriages.  Naturally, professional sports players, like Hollywood celebrities, face many challenges, including long periods of separation while on the road, in making marriages work.

Here's hoping that Jones and his wife are able to address their challenges--one way or the other--without the focus of the media spotlight.  Don't you agree that celebrities face unique challenges in their personal lives?

Monday, June 11, 2012

DIY Kits and Uncontested Divorces in Georgia


I just "googled" the terms "simple, uncontested divorces in Georgia."  Immediately, I was faced with a list of possible websites which included a number of "do-it-yourself" divorce kits.  Of course, since I am an Augusta, Georgia divorce lawyer, I do not recommend that anyone should try to "do-it-yourself," particularly if there are children of the marriage.  The issues, even in an uncontested divorce, are often too complicated.

As Augusta, GA divorce attorneys, we have received a number of telephone calls from people who have tried to handle their own divorces and run into a host of problems.  Naturally, as divorce lawyers, we believe that, instead of doing it yourself, you should find a divorce lawyer who will help you wade through all the legal issues in an uncontested divorce -- at an affordable cost which is almost as cheap as some of the DIY kits.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Divorce Hotels: A New Reality?

[Sample Hotel photo from hotelsinnorthcyprus.com]
Are you a fan of reality shows?  Well, if Dutch entrepreneur Jim Halfens has his way, you may soon be able to watch a new reality show called the "Divorce Hotel!"  Halfens' proposed reality show about divorce is based upon his actual "divorce hotels," which are presently located throughout The Netherlands.

The premise is fairly simple:  Couples check in (separately) to the lavish "divorce hotel" on a friday and then leave divorced by the end of the weekend.  The guests can meet with mediators, lawyers, and other professionals, who attempt to make divorce more pleasant in a luxurious hotel setting.

According to news reports, Halfens supposedly invited Demi Moore and Ashton Kutcher to be his guests, but the couple reportedly did not respond.

As an Augusta, Georgia divorce attorney, (see here), I must admit that I find Halfens' idea of a "divorce hotel" to be somewhat intriguing.  But because divorces can often be complicated matters, particularly when child custody and complex property division issues are present, I personally doubt whether this idea will work for most people.  

Also, there is the matter of cost.  According to news reports, the "divorce hotel" experience can run from $3500 to $10,000.00.  That is simply beyond the means of most people.

But again, even if I, as a divorce lawyer, never send any clients to a divorce hotel, (and Halfens plans to open "divorce hotels" in the United States soon), I can still possibly sit back, like you, and watch his proposed new "divorce hotel" reality show on t.v. in the fall!

Monday, May 21, 2012

The Goolsby Law Firm Brag Board

[Photo of Goolsby Law Firm located at 233 Davis Road, Augusta GA]
I hope you don't mind if I, as a proud father, brag a little bit today about my second son, Blake Goolsby.  As you may know, I already practice law in Augusta, Georgia with my oldest son, Ric, and now, my second son, Blake Goolsby, will be joining us, later this summer, at the Goolsby Law Firm! (see here) In other words, my second son, Blake, just graduated from Mercer Law School a week ago. Now, he is studying for the Georgia Bar Exam before he joins us at our family law practice later this summer in Augusta. We are so proud of Blake and all his accomplishments!

Of course, I don't mean to overlook my third son, Zachary, who just completed his first year of law school at the University of Georgia, in Athens.  We are proud of Zach, too, and also look forward to him joining us at the Goolsby Law Firm in a couple of years, too!  We are truly a family law firm which handles a little bit of everything, including divorces, adoptions, personal injury, and criminal law, in both Georgia state and federal courts.

That's all for bragging about my sons today!  I hope you understood!


Friday, May 11, 2012

The Continuing Deion Sanders Divorce Saga

[Photo of Deion Sanders from wikipedia]
The divorce between former football star Deion Sanders and his spouse, Pilar, continues to play out in the media spotlight. According to various news reports, this past week, Deion Sanders was awarded temporary custody of the parties' three children.  Of course, no one can predict what the court will do at a final hearing.

As Augusta, Georgia divorce lawyers, we sometimes see one party being awarded temporary custody, at a temporary hearing, (which is called a thirty day conference here), only to see custody change by the time of the final hearing.

In some cases involving child custody, as divorce attorneys, we ask the judge to appoint a guardian ad litem to investigate which party should be awarded child custody, along with helping the judge to address child visitation issues.  The guardian ad litem essentially operates as the "eyes and ears" of the court and reports back to the court with their recommendations.

Here's hoping that Deion and Pilar Sanders are able to work out their remaining issues outside the media spotlight.

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Celebrity Separations and Divorces: Chris Harrison

[Photo of The Batchelor Host Chris Harrison and Prior Contestant Jillian Harris from wikipedia]


Have you heard the sad news this past week about yet another celebrity couple reportedly separating?  According to various news reports, Chris Harrison, the host of the popular reality dating series, The Batchelor, along with its various spin-offs, and his wife of 18 years, are reportedly calling it quits.  (A prior contestant is shown in the above photograph from wikipedia with Mr. Harrison).



Of course, if the couple divorces, this inevitably invites the question of whether or not Mr. Harrison will ever be a contestant on his own program. What do you think?

[We are Augusta, GA divorce attorneys who often blog about celebrity divorces and offer practical divorce tips for you to discuss with your own Georgia divorce lawyer.  See here]

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Celebrity Divorces and Living Under the Same Roof: Deion and Pilar Sanders

[Photo of former Dallas Cowboys Cornerback Deion Sanders from wikipedia]
Have you been following the ongoing saga in the news this past week of the divorce between former Dallas Cowboys superstar Deion Sanders and his spouse, Pilar?  According to various news reports, Pilar was arrested by Dallas police last week for allegedly committing a simple battery against the former football star.  Also, Deion Sanders allegedly "tweeted" about the arrest.

But this post isn't really about those allegations, or about the problem of domestic violence.  Nor is this post about the common problems inherent in many celebrity marriages and divorces. Instead, this divorce illustrates some of the types of problems which may occur when parties are going through a divorce, but they continue to live under the same roof while the divorce proceedings are pending.

This situation doesn't just occur in celebrity divorces.  It can happen to anybody going through a divorce. As Augusta, Georgia divorce lawyers, see here, we often see couples who, for many reasons, including financial problems, must continue to live together in the same house, while their divorce is pending. Naturally, the stress of the divorce sometimes compounds the problems which previously existed.

Here's hoping that Deion Sanders and his soon-to-be ex will be able to peacefully co-exist until their divorce is final.  What can couples do to cope with such problems when they must live under the same roof while their divorce is pending?

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Divorce Around the World: Ancient Japan

[Photo of Golden Hall and five-story pagoda of Horyu-ji from wikipedia]

Did you know that, according to various sources, in ancient Japan, a man could reportedly divorce his wife if he simply discovered that she was left-handed!?  Isn't that a bizarre law?  Of course, every country has its own unusual laws, past and present!  Don't you agree?

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Divorce and the Importance of Communication With Your Divorce Lawyer


Good communication is important in every relationship, don't you agree?  That goes for attorney-client relationships, too.  As Augusta, Georgia divorce attorneys, we strongly recommend that you open and maintain a good line of communication with your own divorce lawyer.

Good communication includes consulting with your divorce attorney before you take any action which might have a bearing on your divorce case.  For example, please talk with your divorce lawyer before you choose to deny child visitation to your spouse, or before you elect to terminate his cell phone services.

But being a good communicator also applies to the divorce attorney, too!  In other words, as divorce attorneys, we always try to remember that we should carefully consult with you, the client, before we negotiate a settlement with the other divorce lawyer, or before we represent you in court.  In order to get it right, we must talk with you and discuss your position beforehand.

In short, it is essential that divorce attorneys and clients should sit down and/or talk with each other about every important aspect of their divorce cases!  Again, good communication is the key to any relationship, don't you agree?

Friday, April 6, 2012

Why Simple, Uncontested Divorces Aren't Always So Simple!


As Augusta, Georgia divorce attorneys, we, at the Goolsby Law Firm, often receive telephone calls and emails from people who simply want to get a simple, uncontested divorce.  We understand.  These folks generally want to avoid a costly, contested divorce and just get as far away as possible from their worthless spouse, "Sluggo!"  But here are a couple of practical reasons why a simple, uncontested divorce may not always be so simple:

1. WHEN SLUGGO WON'T COOPERATE:  If your worthless spouse, Sluggo, refuses to cooperate and sign all the uncontested divorce documents, then you are wasting your time and money on this approach.  In other words, in some divorce cases, you and your divorce lawyer may decide it is best for you to take the control out of Sluggo's hands and get him served with contested divorce documents.  Otherwise, Sluggo may delay and delay, (on signing uncontested divorce documents), until the cows come home.

2.  WHEN YOU ARE FORFEITING IMPORTANT RIGHTS:  In some divorce cases, we also see some folks who are so desperate to get a "quick" divorce that they are willing to walk away from equity in the marital home, along with forfeiting other important property or rights.  We generally recommend that people who are facing a divorce should carefully consider, (with their divorce attorneys), whether or not they should make such sacrifices simply to avoid a court battle, or a more costly, contested divorce.

Look, as divorce lawyers, we recognize that each divorce case is different and that it is up to you, the client, to decide whether to go contested or uncontested in your divorce.  But we recommend that you discuss the facts of your divorce case with your own divorce attorney.  We also just wanted to point out that, at least in some divorce cases, there are valid reasons why you and your divorce lawyer may decide that a simple, uncontested divorce may not be best, or be so simple!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Celebrity Separations and Divorce: Christie Brinkley and Peter Cook

[Photo of Christie Brinkley from wikipedia]
Have you read or heard about the reported ongoing media "battle" between model-actress Christie Brinkley and her ex-husband, Peter Cook?  According to various news reports, Ms. Brinkley appeared today on N.B.C.'s Today Show with Matt Lauer and expressed her desire for peace with her ex.  Brinkley and Cook had divorced four years ago, but, since then, the two sides have reportedly traded charges over issues involving child support and alleged "bullying" emails, among other allegations.  But we are not here to take sides.  That is not the point of this post about divorce. 

Here is our point:  As Augusta, Georgia divorce lawyers, we have sometimes seen some divorces which seem to take on a life of their own.  Such divorces never seem to end.  And it often takes one of the parties to decide to take the high road and end it. Here's hoping that Brinkley and Cook will find peace, end the acrimony, stop the legal fees, and go on with their separate lives -- for their own sakes, and for the sake of their two children.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Divorce "Joke of the Day"

[Depiction of scales of justice from wikipedia]
As Augusta, GA divorce attorneys, we certainly realize that divorce and child custody battles are no laughing matter!  But we try very hard to keep this divorce blog from getting too serious or boring, so let's start the week off with another divorce "joke of the day!"  Here's an "oldie-goldie:"

Did you know that statistics indicate that one half of all new marriages end in divorce?  Well, at least that's not as bad as the remaining half of all marriages...which end in death!

Have a great week!

Saturday, March 10, 2012

More Practical Divorce Tips: Keeping a Journal or Timeline


As Augusta, Georgia divorce lawyers, we receive telephone calls and email inquiries every day from people having questions about divorce, child custody, adultery, and contempt actions.  Just as we do in this blog about divorce in Georgia, we generally try to provide such callers and "emailers" with practical tips and information for them to discuss with their own divorce attorneys.

Here is one practical, helpful tip for you which we haven't discussed in this blog in a while:
 
I. KEEP A JOURNAL OR TIMELINE:  In other words, we cannot stress enough the point that, if you are going through a divorce, or child custody battle, you should keep, (in a secure location), a journal, or record or timeline, of all your contacts or communications, about your case, especially conversations with your worthless spouse, "Sluggo."  This journal or timeline will not only help your divorce attorney prepare for court, but also it will help you refresh your own memory about all the daily contacts you have had leading up to court.  Frankly, most of us simply cannot remember all our daily conversations about our children, or about other issues in a divorce case.  Therefore, we generally recommend that you write it down!

Of course, we also recommend that you discuss this matter and all other issues in your divorce with your own divorce lawyer!

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Celebrity Divorces and Separations: Cindy Crawford and Richard Gere

[Photo of Cindy Crawford from wikipedia]
Successful model and business woman Cindy Crawford was a featured guest this morning on the CBS News morning program.  I had forgotten that, between 1991 and 1995, Ms. Crawford was married to actor Richard Gere.  Following her divorce from Gere, she later re-married and now has a happy marriage and two beautiful children.

Everyone knows about her successful modeling and business career.  But I suspect you didn't know about all the incredible charitable work she does for medical research and the Ronald McDonald House, among other exemplary efforts.

While her first marriage may not have been successful, Cindy Crawford is a wonderful example of celebrities who go on, following a divorce, to find happiness and successful careers!

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Divorce and Venue: Where Do You File For A Divorce?

[Photo of courthouse from wikipedia]
As Augusta, GA divorce lawyers, we often receive calls from folks wanting to know where they must go in order to file for a divorce in Georgia.  In other words, do you know the general rule concerning venue, or the proper county or place where you should file, in this state?

The simple answer is that, generally, a party seeking a divorce must file in the county in which the defendant lives, (unless the defendant lived in your county and left it within six months before you file).  Another exception to this general rule is that your worthless spouse, "Sluggo," may sign a document prepared by your divorce attorney, in which he waives, or gives up, the right to be sued for divorce in the county to which he has moved.  In such case, your divorce attorney may file for divorce in your county, instead of his.

As to venue, like all other questions about your divorce, it is important that you discuss such matters with your own divorce lawyer!  And be rest assured that your divorce attorney will know how to get Sluggo served with divorce papers!

http://www.goolsbylawfirm.com/

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Southern Humorist Lewis Grizzard's Take on Divorce


The late, great Southern humorist, Lewis Grizzard, a "great American," was well known for his astute observations about yankees who come South and wear out their welcome here!  As Lewis would put it, if ya'll yankees don't like our grits, or the way we talk, then "Delta is ready when you are!"

Lewis was also an astute observer about the human condition, including many witty observations, (in many of his 25 best-selling books), about the subject of divorce.  You see, Lewis probably felt like he was an expert on the subject, because, as the above book title about alimony suggests, he had been there and done that!

Lewis also once said that he believed in women's liberation.  After all, as he concluded, over the years, he had "liberated" two women! 

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Are Simple, No-Fault Divorces Good or Bad?


I just read another blogger's post in which that blogger, (who will not be identified here), expressed an opinion that no-fault divorces are a bad thing.  In other words, that blogger believes that it should be more difficult for people to get a divorce.  I assume that blogger probably also believes that divorce is morally wrong.  What do you think?

As for me, obviously, since I am an Augusta, Georgia divorce lawyer, I support  Georgia's law which makes it relatively easy to get a divorce in this state without having to prove a fault ground, such as adultery, addiction, or cruel treatment.  In Georgia, a person must simply allege that the marriage is "irretrievably broken."  In short, he or she will then be entitled to get a divorce without having to allege or prove any fault grounds. 

It is not that I necessarily view divorce as a "good thing." No one really believes that.  However, I would hate to see our state make it more difficult for a woman to get out of a violent, abusive marriage.  In other words, in my opinion, no one should be forced to stay in an abusive relationship just because they cannot prove adultery, or another fault ground.  

In addition, I believe that Georgia courts should not be unduly expensive for folks who cannot afford contested divorces, which can cost thousands of dollars, (in contrast to much cheaper simple, uncontested divorces).  For instance, as divorce attorneys at the Goolsby Law Firm, LLC, in Augusta, GA, we often handle simple, uncontested divorces, with children, for as low as $500, plus costs.  Even then, we often see folks who struggle to afford it.  Justice should not only be for the wealthy!  Laws allowing relatively easy, cheap no-fault divorces are therefore necessary, in my opinion.

What is your opinion? 

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Celebrity Divorces and Separations: Katy Perry and Russell Brand

[Photo from wikpedia]
Did you hear the latest Hollywood news?  According to various news reports, a California judge has signed documents which will grant a divorce filed late last year by British comedian Russell Brand from a talented American singer, Katy Perry. 

Technically, it appears that, under California divorce law, the divorce may not be final for another six months.  But, according to news reports, at least the divorce terms have been approved.  Coincidentally, Katy's new hit single is entitled, "The One That Got Away."

While, over the years, there have been many celebrity marriage success stories, this appears to be another example of how Hollywood careers can really put stress on celebrity marriages.  Here's hoping that they both have moved on and that they will find happiness and continued success in their respective careers.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Cayce Vice: Another Tragic Case of Domestic Violence


As divorce lawyers in Augusta, Georgia, we sometimes see, firsthand, in our divorce cases, the tragic results of family violence.  As a former career prosecutor, I prosecuted many cases involving domestic abuse.  Here, in Augusta, this past week, our community experienced a tragic loss of a 21 year old woman who was found dead in her apartment.  Police reportedly believe this young woman, Cayce Vice, is yet another tragic victim of domestic violence.  A prayer vigil was held by family and friends to remember her life.

We should likewise remember all the victims of family violence around the country.  According to Futures Without Violence, three women are murdered, on average, each day in this country by their husbands or boy friends.  Also, according to the Department of Justice, about 3.4 million people, mostly women, are the victims of stalking each year.

But that's enough about statistics.  Let us remember that these numbers are actually real people with families and friends -- like Cayce Vice -- who deserved to live and be left alone, but who are victims of these horrible crimes. 

Friday, January 27, 2012

Is Nagging Really the Number One Cause of Divorce?


According to an article in the Wall Street Journal this week, nagging is one of the primary causes of divorce.  Also, the article suggests that nagging is more common than adultery and that women are more responsible for nagging than men!  Check out the article for yourself at http://www.online.wsj.com/. 

Look, even though I am a man, I cannot defend "my kind" by simply agreeing with this article's conclusions!  First of all, as Augusta, Georgia divorce lawyers, we find that there are many other more prominent causes of divorce, including money issues, control issues, and lack of communication.  Also, we believe that men are just as prone as women to nag or complain about their spouses!

What do you think!?

Friday, January 20, 2012

Celebrity Marriage and Divorce: Jerry Seinfeld

[Photo of "Monk's Cafe" from wikipedia]
Last evening, I enjoyed a live concert performed here in Augusta, Georgia by one of my favorite comedians:  Jerry Seinfeld.  I believe the Seinfeld sitcom remains one of the best in television history!  During the question and answer session, following his hilarious stand-up act, Jerry pointed out that he has been happily married for twelve years.  Of course, that didn't prevent him from making a few funny jokes and observations about marriage and divorce! 

To paraphrase Jerry, he observed that marriage is about two people trying to get along without saying, "I hate you!"

As Augusta, Georgia divorce lawyers, we often hear from folks who, for many different reasons, couldn't accomplish that goal.  But maybe Jerry was right about marriage and divorce!  What do you think?

I noticed from Jerry Seinfeld's website that he is touring the entire country with his act.  If he comes to your area, you should really go and check it out!

Friday, January 13, 2012

Movies About Divorce: One Fine Day

[Photo of movie poster from wikipedia]
Since it's a Friday, (and it is Friday the Thirteenth, at that!), let's keep things light by talking about another one of my favorite movies dealing with divorce!  The movie is One Fine Day, a really good 1996 comedy film about a budding romance between two single, working parents, played by two fine actors, George Clooney and Michelle Pfeiffer.  Ms. Pfeiffer was also the executive producer of the movie.

Have you seen this movie?  What are some of your favorite movies dealing with divorce?