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What to expect during a Texas divorce

On Behalf of | Jun 26, 2023 | Divorce

When the romantic union of marriage unravels, it is an emotionally taxing time for everyone involved. In the state of Texas, the divorce process involves several steps, each having its own unique characteristics.

Even though the process can seem daunting, knowing what to anticipate will help you navigate this challenging time more easily.

The initiation of the divorce process

The divorce process in Texas starts with one spouse (the petitioner) filing an Original Petition for Divorce in the district court. The petition includes necessary information about you, your spouse and any children. It also outlines the reason for the divorce and how you hope to settle matters like property division and child custody. The court then serves the other spouse (the respondent) with the divorce papers.

After the respondent receives the papers, they have 20 days plus the following Monday to file a response. If they fail to respond within this period, the court may grant a default judgment, giving the petitioner everything they asked for in the divorce.

Temporary orders and discovery

Following the petition filing, the court may issue temporary orders. These orders address immediate concerns such as child custody, child support and property use while the divorce is ongoing. This phase aims to maintain the status quo and prevent either party from making significant changes that might affect the final judgment.

During the discovery phase, both parties gather information about each other’s finances, property and other relevant matters. This phase can be time-consuming and complex, especially in high-asset divorces or when the divorce involves children.

Negotiation and final hearing

In Texas, the court requires spouses to attempt to resolve their disputes through negotiation or mediation before heading to trial. If both parties reach an agreement, they present it to the court for approval.

If negotiation fails, the divorce proceeds to a trial. The judge listens to both sides, reviews the evidence and makes the final decisions.

Remember, it is essential to take care of yourself emotionally and physically during this challenging time. The journey may be difficult, but with patience and resilience, you will navigate through and find your way to a new beginning.

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