How Fast Can I Get Divorced in Texas?
For some couples looking to get divorced as quickly as they can, the minimum amount of days it takes to finalize a divorce in Texas is 60 days.
However — the length of your divorce process will ultimately depend on if your divorce is contested or uncontested. Keep reading to learn how our attorneys at Jeff Gilbert Law Office can help.
What is an Uncontested Divorce?
Also known as a non-contested divorce, a couple that can resolve their issues and come to an agreement on the terms of their situation without the need for a court hearing will file an uncontested divorce. This way, if you and your spouse can agree on the terms of your divorce, you may be able to avoid a lengthy and expensive battle.
Filing an Uncontested Divorce
Once you and your partner have agreed to the terms of your divorce, you will need to legalize this choice in writing. This can be done on your own or with the help of a mediator.
After you file for divorce, you will wait for the 60-day period to pass. Then, you will submit a signed divorce decree to the Court. One spouse must appear to give required testimony and, as long as there are no questions or concerns from the Court, the divorce should be granted and your matter finalized.
What is a Contested Divorce?
While it would be ideal for every couple to agree to the terms of their divorce, this isn’t the case. Therefore, couples that cannot come to an agreement will file a contested divorce and will need to bring their case to court.
Filing a Contested Divorce
To begin this process, you will need to file an Original Petition for Divorce with the courthouse in your county. Within this document, you will include the reason for divorce and list any requests you have.
Having a lawyer represent your contested divorce will help protect your rights. Your spouse will then be served with papers notifying them of the divorce. From here, you will need to prepare for your Temporary Orders Hearing — where the Court will implement orders regarding temporary custody, temporary child support, and temporary property division.
Finally, you and your spouse will need to negotiate the terms of your divorce, and you’ll head to trial to make the terms of your divorce final. In Texas, it typically takes between six months to a year to resolve any issues and finalize a divorce agreement.
How Can I Ensure My Divorce Goes Smoothly?
The divorce process is rarely fun or easy — however, there are some things that you and your soon to be ex can do to ensure that your case is finalized as smoothly as possible:
Texas is a community property state, meaning any property that is to be divided in a divorce must have been acquired during the marriage itself. This includes:
- Businesses and professional practices
- Stock accounts
Additionally, all property is considered community property, unless a spouse has proof that would deem a particular asset as part of their separate estate. Otherwise, the community property will be divided equitably by the court.
There are many circumstances that the court can consider when determining what is just and right for asset division, including:
- The difference in earning power between the spouses.
- The health of each spouse.
- Which spouse has custody of the children.
- The education and future employability of each spouse.
While you’re gathering paperwork related to your assets, it’s important to also gather:
- Tax returns
- Income statements and information
- Retirement documents
Set Plans for Your Arrangements
Your divorce agreement will encompass different individual orders, such as alimony (spousal support), child support, and child custody.
Especially if you have children, it’s important to take the time to discuss how you will share custody of your children after the divorce is final. Also, be sure to sit your children down together if possible to explain what will be happening to them. While divorce can be hard on every couple, it can be hardest on their children.
Retain Skilled Legal Representation
Going through a divorce isn’t easy — and having an attorney defending you can prove to be vital. Especially for matters dealing with the division of child custody, 401k accounts, and other benefits that may be awarded during your divorce, the help of a skilled family law litigator can help protect your rights.
Our attorneys at Jeff Gilbert Law Office will work to achieve a successful outcome that enables you to move forward in your life. You will have the confidence of knowing that an experienced Brazoria County attorney is on your side, working to help you achieve your goals.
To book a consultation with our skilled team, contact us at (979) 200-6556 or visit us online today.