Model Time Standards

The following are Georgia’s Model Time Standards for superior courts. The standards are designed for use by courts as voluntary goals to which courts can aspire as well as management tools that are part of a caseflow management strategy. The standard should not be considered as a rule governing individual cases or creating right for individual litigants. The intent is to encourage the fair disposition of cases at the earliest possible time.

In criminal cases, the standards run from the date of filing of the indictment or accusation to the date of disposition by entry of judgment. In civil and domestic relations cases, the standards run from the date of perfection of service to the date of disposition by entry of judgment, with the exception of protections orders, which run from the date of filing. The running of time is suspended under any of these standards by such occurrences as the following.

  1.   The filing of an interlocutory appeal.
  2.   A Stay is issued from a higher court (Federal or state) or from a court of equal standing in another county, district, or state.
  3.   Federal bankruptcy proceedings during pendency of a civil matter.
  4.   A stay is issued due to military duty or incarceration of one of the parties.
  5.   Failure to appear and issuance of a bench warrant for a criminal defendant.
  6.   Treatment to restore the competency of a criminal defendant found not to be competent to stand trial.
  7.   The case is subject to mandated arbitration that is not under the court's control (e.g., attorney fee arbitration or contractually required private arbitration).
  8.   Parties in a divorce case indicate a desire to reconcile and the court suspends activity pending the outcome of the reconciliation process.

Case Category

Case Type


(percent of cases disposed)

Serious Felony1 95% within 540 days
98% within 730 days
95% within 420 days
98% within 540 days
90% within 180 days
98% within 365 days
General Civil
 50% within 180 days
90% within 365 days
98% within 540 days
 Domestic Relations Divorce
50% within 120 days
75% within 240 days

98% within 540 days

Protection Order
 98% within 30 days
100% within 60 days

Custody Modification
75% within 240 days

98% within 540 days

1 A serious felony is defined as a case with a mandatory minimum ten year or greater sentence or any case involving a repeat offender as defined by O.C.G.A. 17-10-7.  It does not include Unified Appeal cases.