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Divorces in Texas

By Earl N Jackson
Dallas, Texas
Board Certified by the
Texas Board of Legal Specialization

There is nothing good about it and it is scary.  Anxiety prevails.  A divorce, for that matter any family law litigation is a scary process. You are entering into a world of unknowns. This guide is here to help get you the information that you need.  Information is power.  Information soothes the soul.

Probably 50% of all marriages will end in divorce. Most marriages will end because the parties have just grown apart. Texas is a “no-fault” divorce state which basically means – we are getting a divorce because we do not like one another anymore. In general, most divorces are granted on the no-fault basis. There are also fault grounds as well such as adultery, cruelty, conviction of a felony, living apart, etc.

The following bullet points are a good place to start in getting the information that you need to come to terms with your divorce case..

Texas Divorce in a nutshell:

  • All divorces require a 60 day waiting period (the period of reconciliation) before you can actually be divorced.   You can file a divorce decree with the court as a Rule 11 Agreement or Settlement Agreement, but you cannot be divorced until the 60 day period has gone by.
  • No one has to have permission to get divorced.   If a party to a marriage wants a divorce, the court will grant a divorce.  It might take some time to get there, but it will grant the divorce.  No permission is needed.
  • Almost all divorces are based upon irreconcilable differences.  “Discord and Conflict that destroys the legitimate ends of the marital relationship where there is no expectation of reconciliation.”  This is the “we don’t like each other” basis for a divorce.  Indeed, after a period of years people grow apart. They just do.  Their lives have taken a different direction.  In other cases (very common), adultery is involved.   In almost half of all marriages resulting in divorce, the divorce is caused by an extra-marital affair. A very common scenario.    This is a fault based divorce.  Fault may entitle a party to a greater portion of the marital estate than would otherwise be allocated. 
  • Property – the property will be divided by the court.  In Texas, there is no 50/50 rule.  It is called the “just and right” division.  But, most judges are going to start out a 50 – 50.  
  • Children – the divorce decree will make provisions for the conservatorship of the child(ren).   There will be a possession schedule.  Child support, unless otherwise agreed, will be ordered. Health insurance for the children will be provided usually by the person who is providing child support.  Unless there is a basis for denying it, the Texas Standard Possession Order will be ordered. The pages listed below and on the menus will take you to more detailed information about the divorce process.

Click here to learn more about the Dallas Divorce Process

Click here to learn about “Uncontested or Agreed Divorces”

Click here to learn about Divorce Myths and Scuttlebutt.

Click here to review Family Law FAQs.

Click here to learn about Alimony in Texas.

Click here to learn about Children in the Divorce/Family Law Context

Click here to review Child Custody.

Click here to review the IRS Tax Dependency Exemption.

Click here to learn about separate property, community property and “community debt”

Annulment in Dallas and North Texas.

Annulment vs. Divorce:  What is the difference, an annulment means that you were not married.