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In Texas, is a Citation mandatory for serving a Counter-Original Petition for Divorce?

Houston, TX |

Process Server served my Original Petition for Divorce with Citation onto my Soon-Ex. Then, my Soon-Ex had a Process Server to serve me a COUNTER-Original Petition for Divorce. Her service was defective so the Judge ruled that "I was not served". Therefore, I have to be served again, per the Judges ruling.

Question: In Texas divorce, is it MANDATORY that a CITATION accompanies her COUNTER-Original Petition, when she tries to serve me a 2nd time?
Emphasis: 1) COUNTER...this in not just an Original Petition...it's a "Counter" Original Petition.
Emphasis: 2) Please base your answer on this Texas Family Code: Sec. 6.408. SERVICE OF CITATION. Citation on the filing of an original petition in a suit for dissolution of a marriage SHALL be issued and served as in other civil cases.

Attorney Answers 2


  1. A counter petition does not need to be served via process server, but can be sent via certified mail to you or your attorney if you have one. She did not need to use a process server. Strange that the Judge ruled it as unsuitable as putting it in your hands is just as effective as sending it you through the mail.

    I practice in Tarrant, Dallas, Denton, Parker and Wise counties. I am licensed only in Texas. Answers are based on current Texas law. This is for educational purposes only. This answer is given based on the facts provided above. Contact a local attorney to further discuss these issues. No attorney client relationship is established. These questions and answers are fully searchable and viewable on the internet.


  2. A counter-petition is served according to the Rules of Civil Procedure, see Rule 21a. She can serve you by certiified mail return receipt requested or by fax, or by hand delivery. Ordinarily the service would be on your attorney, if you have one. If not, then it would be on you. Her counter-petition needs a "certificate of service" on it. Are you trying to do this divorce pro se?

    I am not intending this to be legal advice, because I don't know the particulars of your situation. Call me if you would like to discuss this or other isues.

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