The Divorce Process: What To Expect
There is no “one-size-fits-all” divorce in Texas. The needs and interests of the parties differ greatly from case to case, and the procedures can vary from county to county. But the Texas Family Code establishes the basic framework of the divorce process for all cases, regardless of their individual differences.
At Short Law Firm, PC, in Plano, I have years of experience helping clients understand and deal effectively with divorce issues. When you come to me, l will make sure you know where you stand and how best to achieve your goals when your marriage is ending. I serve clients in Collin County, the Dallas Metroplex and throughout North Texas.
Initiating Divorce Proceedings In Texas
The process of getting a divorce starts with a petition to the court. Even if a couple has already physically separated, Texas law does not allow for a status of legal separation. So the first step in getting a divorce is making a filing with the court, with service of process on the other party.
Of course, before taking that step, you will want to consider what kind of divorce you seek. The scope of the issues to be resolved sometimes makes a simple uncontested divorce unrealistic. It may still be possible, however, to make the process of a contested divorce go more smoothly through alternative dispute resolution methods, such as mediation or collaborative divorce.
Temporary Vs. Permanent Orders
Once the divorce petition is filed, the court will typically enter a temporary order. The goal of this order is to establish basic ground rules against conduct such as hiding assets, harassment or moving children to a different location without mutual agreement. Once the divorce becomes final, the court will issue a permanent order setting forth the parties’ rights and responsibilities regarding issues such as spousal support and child custody.
It is possible to modify a permanent order, but only upon changed circumstances. An example would be reducing the amount of a child support obligation when the party paying it has a significant change in income.