Getting Divorced in Texas?
A basic guide to learn the fundamentals of divorce in Texas
Are You Considering A Divorce In Texas?If so, the first question to ask yourself is whether your divorce will be contested or uncontested.
What's the difference you ask?Contested divorces are divorces where the parties are more likely than not going to need some sort of court intervention or mediation to resolve some if not all of the specific issues unique to your case. Contested divorces often involve early court intervention at a temporary orders hearing, which happens very early on in the case and sets specific orders the parties must follow throughout the duration of the case.
Oftentimes a contested case also involves court-ordered mediation and if the case is not resolved in mediation, it can end in a final trial in front of a judge or jury.
Whereas, an uncontested divorce means that prior to filing for divorce, the parties have reached a meaningful agreement regarding all the specific issues raised by the divorce. An uncontested divorce requires one party to hire a lawyer to draft pleadings and it also requires the other party to sign a waiver of service which waives their right to be personally served with the divorce lawsuit. It further requires both parties to sign an agreed final decree for divorce and one party to be present in court to prove up the agreed final decree in front of a judge.
Can I get a divorce in Texas?
In order to get divorced in Texas, you must have been a resident of Texas for six (6) months prior to filing the petition for divorce and you must file the divorce petition in the county that you have resided in for the previous three (3) months. Your spouse does not necessarily need to meet these requirements.
Exception to the rule: If you have children born from the marriage, you will want to consider where the children have resided for the previous six (6) months and consult with Attorney Jennifer K. Gjesvold to discuss the issues specific to obtaining a divorce in Texas when children are involved.
How long does it take to get a divorce in Texas?
Texas law requires all couples seeking a divorce, whether contested or uncontested, to wait a minimum of 60 days from the date of filing the original petition before finalizing their divorce. Typically, if your divorce is contested, it can take anywhere from six (6) to 18 months to finalize your divorce. In hotly contested or complex contested divorces, it can take even longer to finalize a divorce. If your divorce is uncontested and remains uncontested and your spouse cooperates throughout the divorce proceeding, it usually takes anywhere from three (3) to six (6) months to finalize an uncontested divorce. However, each case has its own unique issues that typically arise that may shorten or lengthen the average time it takes to get divorced in Texas.