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Is There a Way to Get Divorced Without Going to Court?

In Texas, it is possible to divorce without appearing in Court or by just appearing one time to finalize the divorce. To achieve this, the divorce must be amicable, and both parties should be represented by skilled attorneys who help them to mediate their differences and arrive at amicable agreements.

Divorce does not always need to involve multiple court hearings, which are often time-consuming and costly. There are ways that you and your spouse can work together to reach amicable agreements, saving yourself a lot of stress and protecting your relationship, which could be particularly important if you have children.

Using professional mediation with the help of a family law attorney can help you come to personalized agreements outside of the court process. Though a divorce court will still need to approve your agreement, it will mean that they have minimal involvement.

It is also important to recognize that this is not always possible. Sometimes it is in couples’ best interest to attend more than one court hearing. The best thing you can do is secure representation from a divorce lawyer who is skilled in both mediation and litigation; they will guide you and ensure that your rights are protected.

Considering the far-reaching implications of the outcome of your divorce, such as how your custody arrangement will work and how your property will be divided, it is important that you take the necessary steps to ensure a positive outcome. That is where representation from Skillern Firm can prove invaluable.

Minimize Court Involvement With Help From Skillern Firm

Skillern Firm is dedicated to helping people navigate family law matters in Houston and surrounding areas. We offer comprehensive and compassionate legal services, prioritizing mediation wherever possible without compromising the needs and rights of our clients.

Call us to schedule a consultation with a Texas divorce attorney at 936-213-8479.

Court Involvement in the Divorce Process in Texas

It is not possible to get a divorce without any court involvement at all. However, some divorces involve a lot more involvement from the court than others. The main reason why the court will step in is if couples cannot come to agreements on their own.

In order to understand the court’s involvement in your divorce, it is helpful to know a bit about the divorce process in Texas:

Filing for Divorce

The first potential court appearance happens when one spouse files for divorce. Although it was once always necessary to enter the court clerk’s office to file for divorce, it is now usually possible to file papers by mail or online, depending on your county.

Typically, you can download the forms on your county court website, fill them out, and file them electronically. We usually recommend that people seek the guidance of a divorce lawyer at this early stage. An experienced attorney will create a strategy to work towards the best possible outcome for your divorce. They can help you file divorce papers with this in mind and will ensure that everything is filled out correctly, which will help your divorce move forward smoothly.

Contested Divorces

A contested divorce is a divorce where ex-spouses cannot come to an agreement on all issues related to ending their marriage. When this happens, a Judge will have the final say, and you and your ex-spouse will need to go to court.

Divorce court proceedings can last for hours or even days, and before the final trial, spouses will need to attend several court hearings, such as Temporary Orders hearings, disputes over financial disclosures and more. Litigation attorneys will represent each spouse so that their interests are both put forward to the Judge individually.

Uncontested Divorces

In an uncontested divorce, couples are able to come to agreements on all key issues, usually with the help of a skilled lawyer who uses divorce mediation to help people resolve their differences.

If your divorce is uncontested, you may be able to simply submit your divorce settlement agreement along with other paperwork so that the Judge can approve it. If everything is in order, then your Order will be signed and you can obtain a certified copy of your final decree. Or you may still have to appear in court for a final hearing.

If you do have to attend court to finalize an uncontested divorce, it may be a brief appearance. The Judge may need to ask you a few questions to ensure that you meet the requirements for divorce and that you understand the agreement you have signed.

How to Avoid Court Hearings in a Texas Divorce

There are different ways to minimize court involvement in your divorce, known as alternative dispute resolution. These methods will help you come to your own agreement. At Skillern Firm, we understand that each case is unique. We will take the time to listen to your individual circumstances and determine what methods will benefit you.

Mediation and Negotiation

In a divorce, you and your spouse have separate attorneys. Some divorce attorneys are trained mediators, or if a spouse’s attorney is not a trained mediator, then a separate professional may be brought in.

In divorce mediation, a trained professional will work with you and your spouse to help you find solutions to your differences. Typically, divorces involve issues such as:

  • Whether one spouse will pay spousal support to the other, and if so, how much and for how long
  • How you will divide your assets and debts, including what will happen to your family home
  • Child custody arrangements, including a parenting plan

If using mediation, you can agree on all issues, then your divorce will continue as uncontested and will not require much court involvement. This can save time and money on court hearings and helps you and your ex-spouse to remain amicable. This can be particularly important if you have children.

It is important to recognize that a mediated divorce is not always possible. If there are high assets, a high degree of conflict, a history of domestic violence, or an imbalance of power, then court involvement may be necessary to ensure that your rights are protected.

Do I Need to Hire a Local Attorney to File for Divorce?

In Texas, it is possible to file for divorce without the help of a lawyer. However, this decision should not be made lightly. A divorce decree is legally binding, so it is important that you take the necessary measures to ensure that your rights are protected and that your child’s best interests are considered.

Making the decision to divorce is always difficult, and it is natural for emotions to run high. However, this can cloud judgment, and it is important that you do not agree to things without fully understanding the long-term implications.

At Skillern Firm, we believe in empowering our clients with knowledge of the law so that they can make decisions from a place of clarity. We will guide you throughout the entire divorce process and always have your best interest at heart.

Your attorney will also make sure that all paperwork is filed correctly and on time to ensure that your divorce keeps moving forward. Guidance from an attorney will take away a lot of the stress and will help you to transition to your new life with confidence.

Is there a way to Get Divorced Without Going to Court? FAQ

What is a Prove-Up Hearing?

A prove-up is a quick hearing that finalizes an uncontested divorce. It is the last step, and if you are proceeding with an uncontested divorce, then it could be the only time you have to appear in court. You also may not have to appear in court at all, but it depends on the Judge.

Is it Cheaper to Use Mediation?

Having the help of an attorney who is also skilled in mediations often saves money, as it cuts down on court costs. However, it is also important that you choose an attorney who is also a skilled litigator; if you don’t, then you could be left vulnerable.

What is the Quickest Divorce You Can Get?

Every divorce is unique, so it is impossible to say how long a divorce will take. Some are over in a matter of months, and others take up to two years. Mediation often helps a divorce to move along faster because it removes the need to wait for multiple court hearings.

Contact Skillern Firm Today to Speak to an Experienced Divorce Lawyer in Texas

Divorce is often an incredibly difficult time, and many people want it over quickly with little court involvement. However, considering the far-reaching implications of your divorce decree, it is important that you make decisions with clarity and based on what is best for your future and the future of your children if you have them.

At Skillern Firm, we are committed to the best interests of our clients. We will take the time to understand your unique situation and will guide you throughout the entire process. No one should have to navigate divorce alone, and with us by your side, you can be confident that you have guidance from someone who truly cares about your future.

Call us today to schedule a consultation with a collaborative law attorney at 936-213-8479.