Georgia Supreme Court Blog

January 14, 2010

The Domestic Relations Pilot Project

Filed under: Family Law — bce30064 @ 3:21 pm

The Georgia Supreme Court launched its Domestic Relations Pilot Project in 1993. The Project allows direct appeal of cases concerning divorce and alimony to the Supreme Court. As a result of the Project, the Court has decided numerous domestic relations cases an greatly clarified Georgia law related to divorce and alimony. See directory of all 2009 Domestic Relations Pilot Project Cases.

Under this pilot project, divorce and alimony cases are automatically granted review by the Court unless a majority finds the appeal frivolous by a majority vote. The term of the project has been extended to 2011.

I wonder and invite comments about the impact of the Court’s domestic relations pilot project on domestic relations cases in Georgia’s Superior Courts. One would think that a steady diet of recent opinions on domestic relations law would help clarify existing law and improve this area of practice. The Georgia Supreme Court acts with a high degree of unanimity and produces relatively concise opinions. The Court has acted with unanimity in nearly all of the cases decided under the Domestic Relations Pilot Project, as one may see from the link above. More law is not always better law, however, nor do more opinions necessarily contribute to a better understand of the law.

Should the domestic relations pilot project prove successful in clarifying an important area of law and helping Georgians better resolve domestic relations cases, the project may provide a model for clarifying specific areas of law.

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