Divorce in Texas takes longer than many other states as the Texas divorce waiting period is 60 days after filing. Only then can the judge sign a final decree of divorce. To file for a Texas divorce one of the spouses must have been resident for at least 6 months in the state and around 3 months (90 days) in the county in which they wish to file for divorce.
In Texas, the divorce rate is moderate; it is 3.6% per 1,000 of the total population of TX State. Although Texas family law has both no-fault and fault grounds for divorce but most of the divorces are granted on no-fault basis.
To choose between annulment and divorce is dependent on the situation whether the reasons support grounds for divorce or annulment. Most of people, in Texas, prefer annulment to prove non-existence of marriage but the court has made the process more difficult to be chosen.
If you think the dealing with the court system is a complex process, for the furtherance of divorce, divorce lawyer and attorneys are always available to assist you in such difficult issues.
Divorce Grounds in Texas
The divorce rate of Texas is 4.1 per 1000. You can file for a divorce decree under the following divorce grounds in Texas:
Adultery, like in many other states, is also a divorce ground in Texas. You can obtain divorce if you have proof of your spouse’s involvement in any kind of sexual intercourse with a third party.
Conviction of Felony
Conviction of felony or misdemeanor is also lawful divorce ground in Texas. Both you and your spouse have the authority to declare divorce against the liable spouse.
Abandonment by your spouse for a period of one year or more validates your claim for divorce under this divorce ground in Texas.
Confinement in a Mental Hospital
If your spouse is mentally incapacitated and your married life is seriously being affected by it, you can obtain divorce under this divorce ground in Texas.However the petitioner has to prove respondent’s mental incapacitation.
Cruelty is a common divorce ground in Texas. On this you can file for divorce if you have been experiencing physical or verbal abuse at the hands of your spouse.
Living Separate or Apart for Three Years
If you and your spouse have been living apart or separate for a period of three years or more, both you and your spouse can file for a divorce decree under this divorce ground in Texas.
According to this divorce ground in Texas, both of the spouses are entitled to file for a divorce decree if the marriage becomes insupportable because of conflicts or incompatibility. The court establishes for itself the fact that the marriage is beyond any hope of reconciliation before granting divorce under this divorce ground.
Contact a professional divorce attorney or divorce lawyer for detailed information regarding divorce grounds in Texas.
Texas Divorce Laws
Texas has following divorce laws:
As mentioned in the Texas divorce laws, a person, who is seeking a petition for divorce, has to be a permanent resident of Texas State for at least last six months.
A person not previously a resident of this state who is:
- Serving in the armed forces of the United States and
- Has been stationed at one or more military installations in this state for at least last six months and
- At a military installation in a region of Texas for at least the last 90 days is considered to be a Texas domiciliary.
Documents Required for Filing Divorce
According to Texas divorce laws, the essential documents needed to start and finalize a divorce are:
- Petition for Divorce
- Decree of Divorce
There are a few other documents that may be required throughout the filing process, they are:
- Marital Settlement Agreement
- Financial Affidavit
- Child Support Worksheet.
Distribution of Property
Texas is believed to be a “community property” state, which means that a mathematical formula is used to divide the property, where the judge has a right to improvise. The property is to be divided into “marital” and “separate” property. Practically observed in Texas, though, judges are educated to do what is fair according to them in carrying out community property division, even if that means deviating from the formula.
Change of Name or Restoration of Name
According to Texas divorce laws, the spouses can restore their names after they get divorced.
Mediation counseling is an attempt to try and reconciliation the differences amongst the two parties. A mediator is usually hired to start a dialog between the two people in which crucial subjects are picked and discussed (mainly subject which are the root cause of the breakup).
Under Texas divorce laws, there is a policy of limiting alimony. In general, alimony will be granted only for ten years and only if the spouse receiving maintenance does not have enough property after the divorce to provide for his or her minimum reasonable needs. Other conditions include the providing of support if the other spouse is physically or mentally disabled, or lacks the ability to work.
This decision has to be carefully planned as it has to be in the best interest of the child, whether the custody is given to one parent or both. Joint custody is awarded on a number of factors mainly:
- Emotional needs
- Development of the child etc.
Joint custody will not be awarded where there is a history of family violence, neglect, or abuse by one spouse against the other spouse or any child.
Under Texas divorce laws, child support amount is calculated based on a percentage of the net income of the non- custodial parent. The percentages are indicated in tables published by the Texas state.
Contact a professional divorce attorney or divorce lawyer for comprehensive divorce laws information in your state.
Texas Annulment Laws
Annulment is the court’s decree that the marriage was never valid. In other words annulment is the declaration that the marriage never took place. According to Texas annulment laws, after getting annulment both the parties have the right to remarry. If there are children from such a union, the court considers the best interest of the child when declaring child custody. Each state has different annulment laws and grounds. Texas annulment grounds are divided into two categories:
- Void Texas Annulment Grounds
- Voidable Texas Annulment Grounds
Void Texas Annulment Grounds
Under Texas annulment laws, following are the void grounds under which you can file for annulment in Texas:
- Existence of Prior Marriage
The term consanguinity means ‘related by blood’. According to Texas annulment laws, consanguinity means getting married to a blood relation like, father, mother, sister, uncle or aunt. If you married any of them, your marriage is void and both you and your spouse can file for annulment under Texas annulment law.
Existence of Prior Marriage
Texas annulment laws say that you can claim an annulment if your spouse was already married at the time s/he married you.
Voidable Texas Annulment Grounds
According to Texas annulment laws, you can file for annulment under the following voidable annulment grounds:
- Marriage Under the Age of 14
- Marriage Under the Age of 18
- Under Influence of Alcohol or Drugs
- Fraud & Duress
- Mental Incapacity
Marriage Under the Age of 14
You can file for Texas annulment, if you got married at the age of 14. Under the Texas annulment law, in such a case both your parents and friends can sue for annulment within 90 days after your 14th birthday.
Marriage Under the Age of 18
If you get married under the age of 18 years without the consent of parents or court, your parents and friends can claim an annulment under Texas annulment laws.
Under Influence of Alcohol or Drugs
If you got married under the influence of drugs or alcohol, you can file for annulment.
If your spouse is unable to consummate the marriage, you can claim annulment under the Texas annulment laws.
Fraud & Duress
Duress is, when someone forces or threatens you to get married to him/her. Fraud is anything done by misrepresentation or by cheating someone. So, any marriage which took place under fraud or duress can be annulled under Texas annulment laws.
If your spouse had a pre-marriage mental illness and s/he concealed it from you, you can file for annulment if you do not want to continue with the relationship.
Texas Divorce Laws-Frequently Asked Questions
- What is community property?
Community property is the property that is purchased during a marriage. Gift items are not included in community property but it comes under separate property. The court does not take any spouse’s separate property under consideration at the time of divorce. If someone is claiming a separate property, then s/he has to prove it in the court.
- Am I eligible for 50% property?
If you and your spouse are divorcing and you think you will get 50% of the property, then you are absolutely wrong. According to Texas divorce laws, community property is divided into fair and equitable portions.
- Me and my wife are getting an uncontested divorce, can we hire one divorce lawyer?
No. according to Texas divorce laws, one divorce lawyer cannot represent two spouses in a divorce case, even if all the issues are settled.
- Can I file a divorce using separation as a divorce ground?
Separation is not a divorce ground in Texas. So, it is not possible to claim a Texas divorce using separation as a ground.
- What is the minimum residency period for divorce in Texas?
In order to get Texas divorce, you must be a resident of this state for at least six months and the county in which you wish to file for 90 days according to the Texas divorce laws.
- What is the Texas divorce waiting period?
The Texas divorce waiting period is 60 days after filing. Only then can the judge sign a final decree of divorce.
- My spouse has left Texas, can I still claim a divorce here?
Texas divorce laws say that either husband or wife must be a resident of Texas to claim a divorce.
- How is child custody issue settled in Texas?
To settle child custody issue, a child’s interest is given supreme importance. If the child is immature then court considers the parents’ interest to serve the child and which parent will better make decisions for the child. The gender is not taken as a deciding factor by the Texas divorce courts.
- Do grandparents have visitation rights?
Yes, grandparents can definitely visit the grandchild, but they have to get the permission from the divorce court. Texas divorce laws have recently been updated and weekends have been fixed for grandparents’ visitation.
- What amount should be paid as alimony. Is it fixed?
According to Texas divorce laws, the amount which is to be paid for spousal support is $2,500 per month maximum or 20% of the gross income.
- What are the conditions for separation in Texas?
The only condition for separation in Texas is that the parties must live separate and distant for at least 3 years.