Texas Divorce Laws

Before applying to the court it is strongly recommended to make sure that you comply with domicile rules: 6 months in the state and 3 months in the county are the mandatory conditions in this case. In addition, there are a few other Texas divorce rules to learn before going to court.

Divorce Laws in Texas

Reasons - You can initiate a marriage dissolution process only for the reasons covered by divorce law in Texas. They are 7 in total, and while most of them are connected with a certain wrongdoing and may affect the decision when dividing the property or influence the process duration, two of those (living apart and insupportability) are considered no-fault – they don’t require any proof and are the most common.

Waiting periods - Divorce can be officially finalized no sooner than sixty days after submitting the petition to the court. In addition, the parties cannot enter into new marital relationships for another thirty-one days, except with each other.

Property division rules - Property obtained in marital relationships shall be considered common and, in most cases, will be equally shared between the spouses, except for those assets which were:

  • Obtained before marriage
  • Acquired as a gift or inheritance by only one party
  • Received as a recovery for personal trauma
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The Divorce Process in Texas

The Texas divorce process can be broken down into the following steps:

  1. The Petitioner submits a petition to the court.
  2. Then he/she arranges the service of the documents to the Respondent, if the latter did not previously sign a waiver of service.
  3. A Temporary Restraining Order may be issued by the court to ensure safety of assets and good behavior of the parties towards each other while legal proceedings take place.
  4. The Respondent submits an Answer to the court.
  5. Both parties may ask the court for temporary orders concerning their property, child custody, visitation or support, alimony, etc.
  6. If the spouses believe that certain information or documents were hidden, they begin negotiations called discovery in order to recover the missing details.
  7. The discussions with the purpose to settle the case begin. If the scenario is positive, the parties will agree upon all the terms and sign the appropriate document. The marriage will be dissolved as soon as the judge endorses his or her signature on the Agreed Decree.
  8. If they fail to agree to the terms and are willing to go to the court, the date of the hearing will be set.
  9. Before the trial, Texas laws for divorce bind the spouses to make another attempt to decide it peacefully through mediation.
  10. The judge will put his or her signature on the Final Decree after the hearing but no sooner than after a 60-day period.

TX Divorce Laws for Common Law Marriage

TX common law marriage has the same legal status as the official ceremonial type. To enter into such marriage, the following three conditions must be met:

  • Two people agree to be married
  • They live together as husband and wife
  • They introduce themselves to others as a married couple

In case they decide to terminate their relationships and want to take advantage of the legal provisions relating to property, they will have to file for official marriage dissolution.

Common law divorce in TX is pretty much the same as official divorce with one significant difference – the parties must provide evidence that they need a divorce due to a common law marriage in Texas. If they do, debts and common assets will be divided between them under the state of Texas divorce laws. If not, the parties will be considered single and their property personal.

States divorce law