Divorce is well known to be one of life's most stressful events. Emotions can run high, ranging from confusion and anxiety to hurt, anger, and even a desire for revenge. Making sound decisions during such a stressful time can be challenging.
At Hance Law Group, PC, our experienced divorce lawyers in Dallas, TX can help you make decisions that benefit you (and your family's) immediate and long-term health.
Tips for Handling Your Divorce in Dallas
If you're filing for divorce in Dallas, TX, here are some tips you may want to use throughout the process:
- Don't move out of your marital home prior to talking with your lawyer. It could complicate property division.
- Avoid arguments and fights. De-escalation is key if you want to resolve your divorce peacefully.
- Don't start a new relationship, and put a pause on existing ones. You don't want a new partner to get dragged into the divorce under allegations of infidelity from your soon-to-be-ex.
- Prioritize your children (if you have them). If you have children, focus on doing what's best for them at all times.
At Hance Law Group, PC, our Dallas divorce lawyers work with you to find the best path forward in your divorce.
When you hire us, you have access to the knowledge and experience of our entire team. We are here to collaborate with you.
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First, we want to hear your story. From there, we can define your goals and create a plan to work toward those goals.
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We hold ourselves to the highest standards to provide you with meaningful, helpful, results-oriented service.
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Every person comes with a unique set of circumstances. Each case is treated with the utmost care to work toward your goals.
Filing for Divorce in Texas
The divorce process starts with filing a document entitled Original Petition for Divorce with a court in the county in which one of you resides. The party who files the divorce is called the petitioner, and the other party is the respondent (unless the parties choose to file together as joint petitioners).
To file a divorce in Dallas, TX, either party must have lived in Texas for six months and been a resident of the county in which the suit is filed for the preceding 90-day period.
If children were born to or adopted during the marriage, a Suit Affecting the Parent-Child Relationship is included in the Original Petition for Divorce.
Is Texas a No-Fault Divorce State?
Texas is a "no-fault" divorce state, which means that you do not have to prove fault in your marriage for the Court to grant a divorce. The petition will simply state that the marriage has become "insupportable" and no possibility for reconciliation exists. (Texas law also provides for fault-based divorces, such as adultery or cruelty).
If you believe there is a reason for you to pursue a fault-based divorce, then you should consult a divorce attorney in Dallas to discuss the pros and cons of filing for a fault-based divorce. The Court must dispose of all property issues and make orders for the conservatorship (custody) and support of the children of the marriage while it grants the divorce.
Filing an Answer to a Divorce Petition in TX
After filing the Original Petition for Divorce, the petitioner must serve the respondent. A third party, such as a law enforcement officer, can serve the respondent. Once the respondent is served, they have the opportunity to file a response.
Contested vs. Uncontested Divorce in Dallas, TX
If the respondent agrees with the petitioner's demands, then the parties can draft an agreed or uncontested divorce agreement.
In an "agreed" or uncontested divorce in Dallas, both parties agree on how to handle the divorce and draft an agreement detailing the terms, which they both sign. A judge then approves the agreement and finalizes the divorce.
When an agreed, collaborative, or mediated divorce is not possible, the only option is to pursue the divorce in court using litigation. In a contested divorce in Dallas, a judge will listen to each party's case and then determine an equitable arrangement on their behalf, drafting a divorce decree they then sign and finalize.
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