If you are contemplating divorce in the State of Texas it helps to get a general idea of what to expect before you initiate the process. Toward that end, Dallas divorce lawyer Rita M. Boyd answers ten of the most common Texas divorce questions.
- Is there a residency requirement if I want to file for divorce in Texas? One of the spouses must have been a resident of the state for a continuous six-month period. In addition, one of the spouses must have been a resident of the county where the divorce is filed for at least 90 days.
- Can I get a restraining order when I file for divorce? Yes. The court can issue a temporary restraining order when you file for divorce that requires that no assets disappear before they can be divided by the court and requires that the spouses act civilly toward each other and not threaten or harass each other. The court will set a hearing within 14 days to decide if the temporary order should remain in effect.
- Does Texas have a waiting period before the divorce can be finalized? Yes. In Texas, a divorce cannot be final for at least 60 days after the petition is filed.
- What are the grounds for divorce in Texas? Texas offers a no-fault divorce option, referred to as “insupportability,” as well as the following fault grounds upon which a divorce can be granted:
- Cruel treatment that renders further living together insupportable
- Abandonment for at least one year with the intent to abandon
- Long-term incarceration (more than one year)
- Confinement to a mental hospital for at least three years
- Living apart for at least three years.
- Do I need to hire an attorney? You are not legally required to hire an attorney when you go through the divorce process; however, doing so ensures that your rights are protected throughout your divorce.
- How long will it take to get divorced? There is no “one size fits all” answer to the time it takes to get through the divorce process. Your divorce cannot be finalized for at least 60 days even if you agree on everything. Beyond that, whether the divorce is amicable or contentious will be a major factor in determining how long it takes to get divorced.
- Can my spouse prevent me from getting divorced? Your spouse cannot prevent you from getting a divorce; however, if he/she chooses to fight the divorce it will make the process more complicated.
- Am I entitled to alimony? Texas does recognize the right to alimony if one of the following requirements is met:
- The paying spouse was convicted of family violence within two years of the date of the filing of divorce.
- The marriage was 10 years or longer, and the requesting spouse lacks sufficient property to provide for minimal needs (including property awarded in the divorce) and cannot support himself or herself through appropriate employment because of an incapacitating physical or mental disability.
- The marriage was 10 years or longer, and the requesting spouse lacks sufficient property to provide for minimal needs (including property awarded in the divorce) and is the custodian of a child who requires substantial care and personal supervision, making it necessary for that spouse to remain at home with that child.
- The marriage was 10 years or longer, and the requesting spouse lacks sufficient property to provide for minimal needs (including property awarded in the divorce) and lacks earning ability in the labor market adequate to provide for minimal needs.
- What is a Parenting Plan? If there are minor children of the marriage, all issues related to the children must be settled and included in a Parenting Plan approved by the court.
- Will I have to go to court to get divorced? If you can reach an agreement with your spouse that resolves all issues in the divorce you may be able to avoid court altogether. One spouse will just need to appear for a hearing to finalize the divorce. If there are disputed issues in your divorce, however, you will likely need to go to court several times.
Contact a Dallas Divorce Lawyer
If you have additional questions or concerns about divorce in Texas, contact an experienced Dallas divorce lawyer at Rita M. Boyd, P.C. to discuss your legal rights and options by calling 972-380-8000 to schedule your appointment today.