How Long Will It Take To Get a Divorce in Sugar Land TX?
The divorce process is never easy. There are many marital issues that need to be resolved under family law before a divorce can be finalized. In most cases, divorcing couples disagree on important issues, including property division, child custody, spousal maintenance, and the legal separation of assets. When couples do not agree on issues, the divorce process becomes a lot longer.
However, divorce proceedings can be sped up significantly with the help of an experienced divorce attorney. Divorces involve a lot of paperwork, court hearings, and deadlines that are difficult to meet if you haven’t gone through this process before. Luckily, a divorce lawyer has significant experience with this process and can make managing a divorce a lot easier.
Sugar Land Divorce Lawyers at Skillern Firm
The divorce lawyers at Skillern Firm know how frustrating it is to go through a lengthy divorce. Our lawyers care about protecting your future, and we will do everything we can to ensure that your divorce decree is fair and in your best interests. Our divorce attorneys want to make this process as smooth and fast as possible.
We will prioritize mediation and try to achieve a fair divorce decree outside of court to minimize costs and speed up the process. Our Sugar Land divorce lawyers care about your well-being and want to protect your best interests. Four of our family law attorneys are Board Certified in Family Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization, which is a certification that only 1% of attorneys in Texas have.
Call our law firm today at 936-213-8479 for an initial consultation with a Sugar Land divorce lawyer.
Time Periods For Divorce in Sugar Land, TX
Each Sugar Land divorce case is unique, and the divorce timeline varies significantly for each case. There is no way of knowing how long a divorce will take, as it depends entirely on the circumstances of your case. More complex divorces, of course, take longer than straightforward divorces with no children and fewer assets. However, once there are contested issues, they all need to be resolved before the decree can be granted.
All divorce cases in Sugar Land have a mandatory waiting period. It is not possible to file for divorce and complete the divorce decree on the same day. Divorcing spouses must wait a certain period before the final decision can be made on divorce. The aim of this cooling-off period is to ensure that the marriage relationship is definitely over and that both parties are sure they want a divorce.
After filing divorce papers, couples in Sugar Land must wait at least 60 days before the Court can grant the divorce.. If both parties still want to go through with the divorce after this period has passed, a divorce can be granted if all terms are agreed to. There are also certain exceptions to this waiting period, including domestic abuse cases or when a spouse has been convicted of a crime causing personal injury to a family member.
Factors Affecting The Divorce Process in Sugar Land, TX
There are several factors that affect how long the divorce process takes. Some divorce cases are more complicated than others, particularly high-asset divorces or cases involving difficult custody battles. However, even simple divorce cases can drag on for a long time if the parties cannot agree on certain issues.
Couples can get either a contested divorce or an uncontested divorce in Sugar Land. Although uncontested divorce may be quicker, it often leads to unfair settlements and one spouse losing out on assets or property because they are unaware of their entitlements. Because of this, our law firm always recommends seeking advice from a divorce lawyer before filing for divorce.
In the end, most couples opt for contested divorces because they cannot agree on all issues in the divorce. This usually includes property division, division of marital assets, child custody issues, child support, possession and access to children, and spousal support. A couple will normally try to resolve these issues through mediation before bringing the divorce proceedings to trial.
Even with meditation, resolving marital issues can take a long time, as couples often have completely different ideas of what is fair and just. For example, although Texas is a community property state, Texas law provides that marital property should be divided equitably, rather than equally. However, you and your spouse might have different ideas of what a fair division is, which will need to be resolved through mediation or in the court system.
Divorcing spouses in Sugar Land can opt for either a no-fault divorce or an at-fault divorce. No-fault divorce does not require one spouse to prove that the other spouse caused the breakdown of the marriage. No fault simply means that the marriage ended based on “irreconcilable differences”.
However, if one spouse files for a fault-based divorce, they must prove fault to have a successful petition. The grounds for a fault divorce can include adultery, abandonment, cruelty, living apart, or a felony conviction. If you file for divorce based on one of these grounds, you must provide evidence to prove fault.
Proving fault in marriage dissolution can be quite difficult. If your spouse was unfaithful, and you file for divorce on the grounds of adultery, you must prove that your partner actually had intercourse with another person.. Proving fault in a divorce can make the process a lot longer, as it adds an extra step.
If a fault-based divorce is successful, the filing party may get more from the divorce settlement, and the assets may not be a 50/50 split. So, the other spouse will usually put up a fight against a fault-based divorce to ensure they do not lose out on money. This can delay the process even further.
Child custody issues are often the most difficult to resolve during a divorce. In Texas, we use the term conservatorship, but custody is what most people are familiar with so we will use that here. When parents split up, one parent must take primary custody of the children and the other usually gets visitation rights. In a joint-custody arrangement, both parents do not have to have equal rights over the children. In a sole custody arrangement, one parent has custody and the other may have visitation rights or supervised visitation.
When families live together for many years, both parents often want primary custody of the children. If the children involved are older, they may also prefer to live with one parent over the other. Both parents often have varying ideas on what is in the children’s best interests, which can cause friction during child custody battles. The best interest of the child is the Court’s primary consideration.
On top of this, emotions run high during a divorce, and it can be difficult for parents to view the situation objectively. This can lead to child custody battles taking a long time to get resolved and major disagreements within the family. Hiring an experienced divorce lawyer is the best way to speed up child custody proceedings.
A divorce attorney will view the situation objectively and prioritize the best interests of the children involved. They can help you negotiate an arrangement that works for both parents and ensure that the children are taken care of. If you need to file for sole custody, your divorce lawyer can help speed up the process by ensuring you have the right documentation and a convincing argument.
Sugar Land Residency Requirements
To file for divorce in Sugar Land, at least one spouse must be a resident of the state of Texas for at least 6 months. They must also provide evidence showing that they have resided within the county of filing for at least 90 days prior to filing divorce papers.
Bringing your divorce case through the courts can delay the process significantly. Waiting on court hearings, backlogs of cases, and disputing matters can take a long time. You may need to appeal matters you do not agree with, bring forward witnesses to support your case, and spend time gathering evidence.
If you can avoid bringing the case to court through mediation, the process will be a lot quicker. Most courts require mediation prior to hearings and final trial. If they do not, you can hire an independent mediator to mediate the case for you and your spouse.
Unfortunately, domestic abuse is a problem within Sugar Land marriages. Going through a divorce with a person who abused you emotionally or physically throughout the relationship is extremely tough. Often, abusive spouses make the divorce process quite difficult and may use manipulation tactics to get more out of the decree or to prevent the divorce from happening.
If you were a victim of domestic abuse during your marriage relationship, seek help from an experienced divorce attorney. A lawyer can help you get a protection or barring order from your spouse, take measures to protect you and your children, and fight to ensure that you get a fair settlement from the decree.
The Divorce Process in Sugar Land
There are many steps involved in a divorce proceeding. Some of these steps have a mandatory time period, while the length of others will vary depending on the circumstances involved. The key steps involved in a divorce include:
Filing and Serving
The first step is to file an Original Petition for Divorce in a District or County Court. This petition must be then served to your spouse, or you can have them sign a waiver of citation.
The mandatory waiting time after filing for divorce is 60 days. This is a cooling-off period that must pass before the Judge can grant a final decision on the dissolution of the marriage.
You or your spouse must respond to the Original Petition for Divorce within the specified time period. You must file an answer to the petition to be able to contest any matters specified in the petition. If you do not respond to the petition, the Judge may make a default judgment.
Because divorces can take a long time, there is usually a Temporary Orders Hearing by a Judge to make temporary decisions on important matters, such as child custody and who remains in the family home. You and your spouse can decide on temporary orders through mediation or by asking a Judge.
You and your spouse must decide on important marital issues, including spousal support, the division of marital assets, and child custody. Most couples resolve these issues through mediation, with the backing of their divorce lawyer.
If mediation is unsuccessful, the case will be brought to trial for a Judge to decide on divorce issues. Both parties must petition their cases in a court setting and submit evidence to support their case.
Whether decided through mediation or court proceedings, the last step in the divorce process is signing the final decree. This decree should settle all important matters, including who lives in the family home, who has custody of the children, how the marital estate will be divided, and whether spousal support is granted.
How Long Will It Take To Get a Divorce in Sugar Land, TX?
As discussed, there is no exact time period for finalizing a divorce in Sugar Land. Technically, a divorce decree can be granted after the mandatory waiting period of 60 days. However, the large majority of divorce cases take a lot longer. On average, a divorce will take at least 6 months to a year, particularly when there are contested issues.
This timeline includes the divorce petition, mandatory cooling-off period, temporary orders, response to the original petition, settlement discussions, court proceedings, and the post-trial or settlement period. If there are other issues that need to be resolved, including hidden assets or protection orders for domestic abuse, this will delay the process.
Once the final divorce decree is signed by a family court Judge, the divorce is finalized. If you need to make modifications to a divorce settlement, you can get legal assistance from an experienced family lawyer.
How Our Sugar Land Divorce Lawyers Can Help
Often, people try to speed up their divorce by doing it without a lawyer or opting for an uncontested divorce. However, what people do not consider is how much a divorce decree will affect the rest of your life. Even if the process takes a year, it is better to have a decree that you are protected by than one that causes you to lose out on your assets or access to your children.
The best way to speed up the process is to hire a divorce attorney that has significant experience with family law. The divorce lawyers at Skillern Firm will help you speed up the process by handling all paperwork on your behalf, preventing any mistakes in documentation, filing documents on time, requesting hearings, and ensuring that your needs are properly heard during the process.
They will make the process much easier by advising you on your entitlements, putting you in touch with financial advisors, drawing up custody and visitation arrangements for your children, protecting your interests during mediation, and representing you in court if it comes to it. By hiring a divorce attorney, you are protecting your best interests and ensuring that your future is not affected by an unfavorable divorce settlement.
Contact a Divorce Lawyer at Skillern Firm Today!
Divorce can be an amicable and speedy process, or it can drag on for a significant amount of time. The deciding factors on how long your divorce will take are you and your spouse. If you can agree on certain matters and move the case through the courts quickly, the divorce will be faster.
However, what is most important is ensuring that your best interests are protected throughout the process and that you do not lose out on assets or rights to your children. The only way to do this is by hiring a Sugar Land divorce lawyer who will advise you on your entitlements and assess whether the final decree is fair and in your best interests.
At Skillern Firm, our Sugar Land divorce lawyers have what it takes to get a favorable outcome in your divorce case. Our lawyers understand the repercussions of a bad divorce settlement, and we will do everything we can to prevent this in your case. We have a team of highly experienced divorce lawyers that care about what you are going through.
Our focus is on resolving divorce matters through amicable mediation and ensuring that your unique needs are met. If necessary, we will take your case to court and fight aggressively on your behalf to ensure you get what you are entitled to. With recognition by Super Lawyers and consistently high AVVO ratings, you are dealing with the best when you hire our divorce attorneys at Skillern Firm.
Call today at 936-213-8479 for a consultation with our Sugar Land divorce attorneys.