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Close up of man and woman sitting across from each other with a divorce decree, car keys, and wedding rings in between them. Division of assets can be a tricky situation, but a Sugar Land family law attorney can help make the process easier.Hunters Creek Village Divorce Lawyer

Divorces are incredibly emotional and financially straining. If you are considering a divorce, have received divorce papers, or are going through the process of a contested divorce – contact a Hunters Creek Village, TX divorce attorney today.

At Skillern Firm, our divorce lawyers are experienced in all family law and divorce processes, allowing us to support our clients through every step.

Contact one of our experienced family law attorneys at 936-213-8479.

Fault And No-Fault Divorces

When filing for a divorce, you must include details regarding why you’re requesting a divorce. Texas is a no-fault divorce state, meaning spouses can request divorce when the marriage has come to a natural end, without it being the fault of either spouse.

There are a variety of fault or no-fault grounds for divorce in Texas. In most cases, a no-fault divorce is an easier and quicker process than an at-fault divorce.

Examples of a no-fault divorce are:

  • Insupportability.
  • At least three years of confinement in a mental hospital.
  • Living separately without cohabiting for at least three years.

Examples of at-fault-based divorce are:

  • Abandonment.
  • Cruelty.
  • Adultery.
  • Felony convictions under criminal law.

In the example of an at-fault-based divorce, it can be tempting to act maliciously towards the spouse at fault. This could be financially or personally. When filing an at-fault divorce, it is important to remember you must provide evidence to support your claim.

Contested Divorce

Divorces are often described as the most stressful event in a person’s life. It is emotional and expensive, and the legal system can become overwhelming to navigate.

A divorce where both spouses agree to the initial divorce, and the conditions of the divorce tend to be simpler to resolve and a quicker process. However, in some divorce cases, the two spouses cannot come to an agreement over the division of marital property or child custody.

A contested divorce is when the initial divorce petition is filed and the recipient spouse contests it. In addition, a contested divorce can be when the other spouse agrees to the divorce but contests the conditions of the divorce.

Divorce Lawyer for Women

What Is The Process For A Contested Divorce In Texas?

In order to begin the divorce process in Texas, there are multiple steps and requirements throughout the proceedings. The process can be complex with complicated jargon, which is why it is always recommended to discuss a case with a family law attorney. At Skillern Firm, our lawyers are highly experienced and are ready to support you through the process.

Ensuring You Meet Residency Requirements

Firstly, it is important that spouses meet the residency requirements under the family law in Texas. To meet these requirements, you must have lived for 90 days in the county where you intend to file for divorce and have lived within the state of Texas for at least six months before you file for a divorce.

There are some exceptions for those with more complex living arrangements. One of the spouses can reside in a different country, state, or county if the other spouse has lived within Texas for at least six months to be eligible for a divorce in Texas.

Secondly, there are exceptions for those who work outside of Texas. If a Texas resident works for the United States government and must work for the government in a different country, they can still file for a divorce in Texas.

Hire A Hunters Creek Village Divorce Lawyer

If you are facing a contested divorce, it is imperative you hire a skilled divorce attorney for effective legal guidance. It is important you hire a divorce lawyer that you feel comfortable with to provide you with high-quality legal aid.

You may be aware of people representing themselves in ‘do-it-yourself’ divorces. However, this type of process can lead to devastating consequences if the individual does not know how to navigate the family law legal system properly.

Hiring an attorney can be costly, but the support and knowledge a divorce lawyer can provide are invaluable. A family lawyer is well worth it when the outcome of the family law matters are so important.

Serving The Divorce Papers

In Texas, the process of legal separation doesn’t begin until the Original Petition of Divorce has been filed in your county’s courthouse. It is at this point in the process that you must communicate to the court the reason for the divorce.

Once a Judge has signed off the paperwork, it must then be submitted to the receiving spouse. This must be done in a legal manner, so the recipient is formally notified.

The divorce papers must be submitted by a constable, a sheriff, or another individual authorized by the court. These people must then attempt delivery in person or via certified mail.

If the recipient does not respond to the divorce papers delivered in this manner, the court can decide to serve the papers in two other methods. This can be service by publication whereby the notice of divorce is printed in a newspaper, or service by posting, whereby the notice is posted at your local courthouse.

Once the response has been filed, both parties must then submit evidence of specific information such as financial matters, including property assets and retirement information. This must take place within 30 days of filing the answer.

Responding To Divorce Papers

Answering divorce documents requires completing a legal form that protects the Respondent’s right to be involved in divorce proceedings. If the Respondent does not reply to the divorce documents, then a judge will make the decision for them. Meaning they will not have a say in property division or child custody.

In contested divorce cases, the responding spouse can file a counter-petition, giving them a chance to inform the Judge of their opinion about matters within the divorce process.

The Waiting Period

Within all Texas divorce cases, there is a 60-day waiting period under the law. This acts as a cooling-off period for the 60 days after a divorce petition has been filed, giving the spouses the time to reconsider the divorce if they wish.

There are occasions where spouses file for a divorce in the heat of the moment, for example, after an argument, but retract the decision during the waiting period. It is important to note that, in many cases, divorces will take longer than 60 days to be finalized.

There are two exceptions to the waiting period, both as a result of a conviction under criminal law against a spouse.

  • The spouse you are filing a divorce against has been convicted of a crime involving domestic violence against you.
  • The spouse you are filing a divorce against has a protective order in place as a result of domestic violence within the marriage.

Temporary Orders Hearing

In Texas Divorces, either spouse can request Temporary Orders from the court to support the preservation of property and outline further guidelines. This could prohibit one spouse from hiding, damaging or selling any property assets that belong to either party. These orders can provide guidance while the divorce is being finalized on factors such as:

  • Interim attorney fees.
  • Temporary use of property.
  • Temporary debt payments.
  • Temporary spousal support.
  • Exchanging financial information to divide property and debt accurately.

In divorces involving children, Temporary Orders could be issued to protect the children’s safety and welfare. This order can give guidance on:

  • Temporary visitation.
  • Temporary custody.
  • Temporary child support.
  • The exchange of financial information for child support.
  • Health insurance information for the child.

If you are concerned about injury to yourself or your children at the hands of your ex-partner, you can request a restraining order in addition to temporary orders.

Negotiating Property And Child Custody

Negotiating elements of divorce can either take place at a court trial or through mediation. A court trial is ideal for those in a contested divorce to be surrounded by divorce attorneys and the Judge in order to make the final agreements on child custody and marital property.

Mediation is where the two spouses separately meet an unbiased third-party mediator to come to an agreement. Reaching an agreement through mediation can be a less expensive option than a trial. Discussing these options with your experienced child custody lawyer will help you find the right route for your individual divorce.

Fathers Rights

Divorces At Trial

If mediation does not work, reaching an agreement regarding the divorce in court is the next best option. This is where divorce attorneys will work with their clients to present evidence to argue the outcome of property division and child custody.

When a contested divorce goes to trial, it allows the Judge to make the final decisions on factors that the two spouses could not agree on. This can include child support payments, child custody percentages, and the division of marital assets.

The Final Term Of The Divorce

The trial period can take a long time, regardless of how complex your divorce can be. When all the elements of the divorce are finally agreed on, and the court has made the final judgment to terminate the marriage, all the details of the divorce will be outlined in a document called the final decree. Once the Judge signs this document, they are legally separated.

How Long Does The Divorce Process Take?

Within the divorce process, there are many factors that can contribute to how long a divorce can take. On average, Texas divorces take at least 6-8 months from filing the Original Petition to signing the Final Decree.

However, the more the two spouses disagree on, the longer the divorce will take. In some cases, the process can take years to finalize. Therefore, it is imperative to hire an experienced law attorney to encourage the agreement on elements of the divorce.

Contact A Premium Divorce Lawyer Today

The process of divorce can be incredibly difficult for everyone involved. The stress financially and emotionally can take a big toll on your life. This is why it is imperative to have a reputable family lawyer providing a high level of support and legal knowledge throughout the case.

At Skillern Firm, we have a number of attorneys dedicated to family law to assist you in navigating the legal process.

Call our law offices today at 936-213-8479.

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