DIVORCE ATTORNEY IN WACO, TEXAS
Divorce Services We Provide for Waco, Temple, and Killeen
Our firm provides a full array of divorce services. We have deep experience and insight into Texas law and proceedings, how courts view various family law issues, and how to thoroughly prepare your case to give you the best chance of success in reaching your legal objectives.
This detailed approach applies to all Texas divorce issues such as:
Alimony, also known as spousal support, which can be a complex issue depending on various factors that the court will review to determine if it is to be granted and, in cases where it is granted, the amount/terms involved.
Appeals that can follow a final judgment that is believed to have been determined based on an error in the application of law or an error in fact. Our attorneys handle all appellate issues pertaining to the practice of Texas family law.
Assets and Debt Divisions; in all divorce cases, marital property and debts will need to be divided and distributed according to the “community property” rule which can have a dramatic effect on divorce proceedings.
Business Owner Divorce; this is typically a complicated issue in terms of the division of marital property. Even in businesses categorized as separate property prior to marriage, the increase in value over the time of the marriage can raise issues that need to be addressed and resolved.
Child Custody; this issue is often contested and a source of deep concern for parents. Our lawyers will fight zealously to protect your parental rights.
Child Support that must be determined according to state guidelines and approved by the court; in many cases, this can be complicated by various factors such as children from a previous relationship.
Common-Law Divorce which a procedure you must go through if your marriage falls under the criteria of a common-law marriage.
Contested Divorce in which you will want to ensure that your best interests do not get overlooked in all the pertinent issues to be resolved involving property, finances, children, and more.
High Net Worth Divorce for those who share considerable assets with a spouse; these cases can be far more complex and contentious than other cases.
Modifications of divorce orders, in which you can seek to have child custody, visitation, child support, or alimony altered through the courts based on a substantial change in circumstances.
What Does Getting a Divorce Look Like in Texas?
How your divorce proceeds largely depends on whether you file for an uncontested or contested divorce.
If you agree on terms for your divorce and all divorce-related processes with your spouse, you can file for an uncontested divorce. In contrast, if you disagree on how to handle any aspect of your divorce, you'll need to file for a contested divorce.
In an uncontested divorce, the parties typically draft and sign a divorce agreement laying out the terms both parties have agreed to. The court can use this agreement to draft and issue an official divorce decree with the same terms, finalizing the divorce. Courts will only accept divorce agreements that the judge presiding over the case considers equitable.
A contested divorce can transition into an uncontested divorce if the parties can resolve their differences using a form of alternative dispute resolution (ADR) such as collaborative law or mediation.
The divorce process typically looks something like this:
One party, the petitioner, files a petition for divorce. The petition includes the petitioner's proposed terms for the divorce, which are the terms established in the divorce agreement in an uncontested divorce. It also provides the court with information about the marriage and the cause of the divorce.
The petitioner must then serve their spouse, who acts as the respondent, through a third party such as a sheriff or process server.
If the respondent disagrees with the terms proposed by the petitioner, they can file a response with the court. Otherwise, they can waive their right to respond, allowing the court to continue with the divorce. At this stage, most uncontested divorces resolve with the court issuing a decree that has the same terms as whatever divorce agreement the parties drafted.
In a contested divorce, the court may issue temporary orders to determine how the parties handle processes such as custody while the divorce is ongoing.
Finally, in a contested divorce, the court will hold a trial. After hearing evidence from both parties, the court will issue a decree that the judge considers equitable and finalize the divorce.
Having an experienced lawyer by your side is vital if you want to obtain the best results in your divorce.
The Grounds for Filing for Divorce in Texas
In the state of Texas, you have the option of filing on grounds of either "fault" or "no fault." This means that you can either prove that one of the state's fault-based grounds for divorce is true, or you can get a divorce based on irreconcilable differences.
According to Texas Family Code §6.001-6.008, the grounds for divorce in Texas include:
Insupportability (irreconcilable differences)
Conviction of felony
Living apart (for at least three years)
Confinement of the other spouse in a mental hospital (for at least three years)
Residency Requirements to File For Divorce in TX
Before a divorce can be filed in Texas, at least one of the spouses must have been living within the state for at least six months. Furthermore, at least one of the spouses must have lived in the county where the divorce is being filed for 90 days or longer. The divorce process goes much more quickly if both parties are able to agree on their divorce terms. If they are not, the spouses will have to handle the matter through litigation, which can extend the length of time.
Does Texas Recognize Legal Separation?
Texas law does not recognize legal separation, which means that you can file your divorce petition immediately. However, it also means that you will be considered legally married until the divorce has been finalized.