What is a Lis Pendens in a Divorce in Georgia?

What is a Lis Pendens in a Divorce in Georgia?

Lis pendens is a legal tool that is used during divorce in Georgia to protect the rights of the person filing it. Not many people realize the power of Lis Pendens. It is more than just a legal concept that is translated as “lawsuit pending.”

Filing a lis pendens during a divorce action can contest the ownership of properties that are listed in the notice. Until the lawsuit is settled, the properties remain subject to a pending legal decision. Since lis pendens is recorded in county real estate records, none of the parties involved can claim them as a consequence of one of the parties filing it.

Property Protection After Divorce in Georgia:

The law of Georgia does not allow buying or selling of property once the divorce is filed. However, without filing a lis pendens your property still might be at risk. So, this law cannot protect the property unless the contestation is in the knowledge of the real estate.

Once a buyer has purchased a property unknowingly, it becomes nearly impossible to recover it. So even if later the judge awards the property to one of the individuals in the settlement, he/she still won’t legally have it under their name.

You may lose your property just because you neglected the importance of a lawsuit. In order to avoid the risk of losing your home or any other property, it is essential to file lis pendens with your divorce in Georgia. It will protect your right to any property that you have with your spouse.

However, one lis pendens lawsuit is useful to protect one property which means if you wish to protect more than one property you would have to sign separate lawsuits for each one of them.

Filing a lis pendens will warn any potential buyer about the status of the property ensuring that nobody buys it. Therefore, no property would be lost in the process. Mostly when buyers discover that a property is under lis pendens, they avoid purchasing it.

Also, even if someone does buy your property despite the lawsuit, it would help you in recovering it conveniently. So, any property that you filed a lis pendens for will be under the protection of the law and will only be sold after the divorce settlement is finalized.

If your spouse sells the house you filed lis pendens for, the buyer will have to turn it over to you at the settlement with your spouse reimbursing the buyer.

Types of Property Filed in Lis Pendens:

Any real property that you own can be contested by a lis pendens. Real property is land and everything attached to it under your ownership. For instance, here are some properties for which you can file a lis pendens:

  • Condos
  • Vacation Homes
  • Marital Homes
  • Undeveloped land
  • Rental Property

Things that do not include in real property:

  • Furniture
  • Cars
  • Boats
  • Motorcycles

Importance of Proper Filing:

One most necessary thing to consider to protect your real estate is the correct and complete filing of the requisite paperwork. You can approach the legal proceedings and filing of paperwork more efficiently with the help of an attorney. They will guide you properly through the filing of lis pendens.

In case of submitting an improper and incomplete notice, the lis pendens may not be recorded, leaving the potential buyers unaware of the status of the property. This could result in the risk of losing your property and make it nearly impossible to regain it once it’s sold to someone.

Lis Pendens vs Standing Order:

As mentioned before the standing order that goes into action after a divorce is signed does not hold as much power as one may imagine. The violation of a standing order is common and usually goes unpunished.

Even if you do file a contempt action against a guilty party to be punished and to recover your property, it won’t be much in your favor as the guilty party might get a punishment. However, it will not “un-sell” the property.

Moreover, a standing order doesn’t prevent a property from being sold. That is only possible if you file a lis pendens.

Contacting a Professional Divorce Lawyer:

The best thing to do after filing a divorce in Georgia is to file a lis pendens for any property you own instead of relying on a standing order. However, to go forth with the legal proceedings effectively, you need to hire a divorce lawyer.

An experienced lawyer will ensure that your lawsuit is error-free and filed timely. At Cheap Uncontested Divorce, we make sure that our attorney helps you take every necessary step and get you the marital property that you deserve. Contact us today or reach out to us online.