My law practice has been representing individuals seeking and defending divorces for over 30 years. The most common inquiry we get everyday is whether or not they can file a divorce.
In Texas, a person can legally file for divorce with or without fault. Essentially, what most persons allege when they file for their divorce is “insupportability”. What does “insupportability” mean? The way we explain to people trying to get a simple divorce is that “insupportability” means that they are seeking a no fault divorce.
How can I get a cheap and quick divorce? The least expensive way of getting a divorce in Texas is for the parties to agree on the divorce and be able to agree on the terms of the divorce. When the divorce involves no children, the issue to get an uncontested divorce is for the parties to be able to agree on the division of their “stuff”.
Does my spouse need to hire an attorney? There is no requirement that both parties retain their own attorney. However, an attorney can not represent both parties. An attorney is allowed to represent the individual that hires the attorney, but not the Respondent.
Can I bring my spouse when I meet with the attorney? As a matter of practice, it is never a good idea to have the client and the spouse in a meeting with the same attorney. An attorney can only represent the legal interests of one side and one party. It would create a conflict of legal interests for an attorney to have both the party filing for the divorce and the party defending the divorce in the office.
The divorce will be uncontested, can I have my spouse come meet with you too? NO. If a divorce is going to be uncontested, the client must relate to our office the terms for the divorce. If the other party has a question or comment, then, they can relate the question or comment to our office thru the client.
Can I stop the divorce? Many an inquiry will involve an individual calling my office and stating that the other spouse has filed for divorce and the individual does not want the divorce. Practically speaking, an individual can not stop a divorce proceeding filed by the other spouse. Since Texas is a no fault state when it comes to divorce, a person can sue for divorce and get the divorce finalized whether or not the other spouse wants it or not. Even though an individual can not stop a divorce proceeding, the individual does have the right to file a response or counter-petition for divorce to make sure that the individual does not default on the proceeding.
How long will a divorce take to finalize? In Texas, a divorce must be on file for 60 days before the person can ask for the court to finalize the divorce. The other party must have defaulted after being duly served with citation, signed a waiver of service, or agreed to the divorce.
Do I have to respond to a divorce petition? If a person is served with citation on a divorce case, the person must file a response with the court in order to avoid a default judgment being granted against the person.
Like an other legal proceeding, it is important to consult with a lawyer whenever a proceeding has been filed against you. Never risk a default. It will be more expensive to try to overturn a default judgment then to defend it before it gets to a default judgment.