Divorce Attorneys in Corpus Christi & Dallas, Texas
According to Statista, Texas had a divorce rate of 2.6 divorces per thousand inhabitants in 2018. Going through a divorce can be a difficult and emotional experience. Such dissolution of marriage can have noteworthy long-lasting consequences on different aspects of your life, including your family, finances, children, assets, and friends. However, with heightened emotions and an overabundance of misleading information out there, it is easy to make irreversible mistakes without adequate guidance.
If you live in Texas, and you are considering divorce or have just been served with divorce papers, it is important to consult with a knowledgeable Texas family law attorney. The Torres Attorneys are dedicated to offering experienced legal services and helping clients through the difficult transitions in their lives. We will review your unique situation, help you understand your possible options, and help you navigate key decisions in your divorce. We will offer you the comprehensive legal guidance you need to resolve matters of property division, child custody, child support, and spousal maintenance.
The Torres Attorneys are proud to serve clients throughout Corpus Christi, Texas, and the surrounding communities of Fort Worth and Dallas.
Divorce in Texas
Texas is a mixed state. That is, an individual can either file for divorce on no-fault or fault grounds. "No-fault" grounds are allowed when the couple claims “insupportability,” which means a conflict of personalities that rules out an expectation of reconciliation.
A fault divorce may be filed on the grounds of:
Conviction of a felony
Abandonment (an intention to abandon and been away for at least one year)
Confinement in a mental hospital
The court may grant a divorce to either spouse when the couple has been living separately for at least three years.
To file for a Texas divorce, one of the spouses must have been living in the state continuously for six months prior to filing. Also, one of the spouses must have been living in the county where they intend to file the divorce for a minimum of 90 days.
The divorce process begins when one spouse files an Original Petition for Divorce with the Texas court. The divorce papers will be delivered (served) to the other spouse personally. If one spouse is at fault for the breakup of the marriage (fault grounds), the court may take that factor into consideration when determining equitable (fair) property division.
Contested vs. Uncontested
Generally, divorces in Texas are categorized into two - contested and uncontested divorce.
In an uncontested divorce, both spouses mutually agree on the essential terms and conditions of the divorce, such as property division, spousal maintenance, child support, custody, tax deductions, and parenting time. They will file the agreed-upon terms with the Texas court for official approval.
Conversely, in a contested divorce, the spouses are unable to agree on one or more essential terms or conditions of the divorce settlement. A court hearing may be required to settle such divorce issues, where the judge will give a final order.
Spousal maintenance or alimony is a court-ordered payment from the higher-earning spouse to the lower- or non-earning spouse to help the receiving spouse meet "minimum reasonable needs" during or after the divorce or legal separation. Texas courts will only award spousal maintenance if:
One spouse has been convicted of domestic violence against the other spouse or children
The marriage lasted for at least 10 years
The supported spouse is unable to be self-supporting due to a disability
The requesting spouse is the custodian of a disabled child, thus limiting his or her ability to work
Some factors considered when determining the amount of spousal maintenance include:
The duration of the marriage
The ability of the spouse to pay support
The earning ability, age, and health of the recipient spouse
The education and skills of the spouses
The contribution of one spouse to the other spouse's education
The contribution of one spouse to the marital property or homemaking services
Bad actions by either spouse, for instance, committing adultery or wasting community property
Division of Property
Texas is a community property state. Therefore, all property acquired, income earned, or debt incurred during the marriage are regarded as marital property or debt and must be divided “equitably.” However, “equitably” isn’t necessarily “equally” but rather in a fair manner. To determine what is considered a “fair” division of property, the court may consider the following factors:
Unequal earning power
Ages, education, and health of the spouses
Divorce on fault grounds
The amount of separate property owned by each spouse
Each spouse will keep their separate property (property acquired before the marriage, or given as gift or inheritance during the marriage).
Child Custody and Support
In Texas, child custody is referred to as "conservatorship." In a contested divorce, the Texas court will consider the following factors when awarding child custody and support:
The child's own wishes
Whether joint custody (joint conservatorship) would benefit the psychological, physical, and emotional well-being of the child
The ability of the parents to encourage and promote a relationship between the child and themselves
The ability of both parents to work together and make decisions that are in the best interest of the child
The contribution of either parent to the upbringing of the child
Other factors determined by the court to be in the child's best interest
Family Law Attorneys in Corpus Christi, Texas
Going through a Texas divorce involves a lot of complexities. Trying to negotiate a divorce settlement, property division, and determining child conservatorship and visitation periods with your estranged spouse can make the process even more complicated and overwhelming. Thankfully, a knowledgeable Texas family law attorney can offer the comprehensive guidance you need and help you navigate key decisions.
The Torres Attorneys are highly experienced and knowledgeable in family law matters, including divorce, spousal maintenance, child custody, and support. As your legal counsel, we will work diligently with all parties involved and ensure that all divorce issues and relationship differences are resolved productively. Our attorneys will fight compassionately to protect you, your future, and your family's best interests.
Experienced Divorce Attorneys Serving
Corpus Christi, Texas
If you are considering divorce or have just been served with divorce papers, call The Torres Attorneys today to schedule a one-on-one consultation. Our attorneys can offer you the experienced legal guidance and advocacy you need to achieve a favorable outcome. We are proud to serve individuals and families throughout Corpus Christi, Fort Worth, and Dallas, Texas.