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Texas Divorce Law: Questions and Answers

While it is generally advisable to consult with a divorce lawyer, the following information, based on Texas divorce law, may be helpful to divorcing persons who live in the state of Texas.




Texas Divorce Law

by Dr. John Luton

If you’re searching for information about Texas divorce law, you’ve come to the right place. I’ve tried to provide some straight answers without launching into a lot of legalese. I hope you’ll find the information helpful.

I’m not a lawyer, but as a marriage and family counselor with more than 20 years experience, I’ve worked with a lot of people who’ve gone through a divorce. From those years of working day in and day out with hurting people, I’ve gained a lot of insight into the crisis of divorce. I’ve seen the pain and suffering that is inflicted on partners and children. I’ve also witnessed family members and friends who’ve had to stand by helplessly as formerly devoted partners “duke it out” in divorce proceedings.

Texas Divorce Law ~ Questions and Answers

When differences are not reconcilable, and the relationship is deemed irremediable, divorce is imminent. Often, the recognition of this fact, and the decision for the partners to pursue their lives independently, is the only workable solution. When this happens, numerous questions arise that must be addressed.

While it is generally advisable to consult with a divorce lawyer, the following information, based on Texas divorce law, may be helpful to divorcing persons who live in the state of Texas.

Texas Divorce Law: Residency Requirement

· Is there a residency requirement for those filing for a divorce in Texas?

Yes. According to Texas divorce law, at least one of the spouses filing for dissolution of the marriage must have been a resident of Texas for six months. The person must also have been a resident for 90 days in the county where the dissolution of marriage is filed.

Texas Divorce Law: Waiting Periods

· Does Texas divorce law mandate a waiting period after the dissolution of marriage has been filed?

Yes. In Texas, there is a mandatory waiting period of 60 days (after filing) before a divorce will be granted.

Texas Divorce Law: Legal Grounds for Dissolution of Marriage
· What does Texas divorce law specify as legal grounds for dissolution of a marriage?

In Texas, divorce law stipulates the following two conditions as legal grounds for a divorce:

(1) The marriage has become insupportable because of discord or conflict of personalities that has destroyed the legitimate ends of the marriage relationship and prevents any reasonable expectation of reconciliation.

(2) The couple has been living separate and apart without cohabitation for 3 years. (Texas Codes Annotated; Family Code, Chapters 6.001 and 6.006). These grounds apply to a no-fault dissolution of marriage.

According to Texas divorce law, grounds for a general dissolution of a marriage include: “adultery, abandonment, confinement for insanity for three years, conviction and imprisonment for a felony for more than one year, and cruel and inhuman treatment” (Texas Codes Annotated: Family Code, Chapters 6.001 to 6.007).

Texas Divorce Law: Marriage Counseling Requirement

· Is there a counseling requirement before dissolution of marriage becomes final?

According to Texas divorce law, if a couple seeks a no-fault dissolution of marriage, and the court perceives a reasonable possibility of reconciliation, a stay of resolution may be issued. During this time, a couple will be required to participate in marriage counseling.

After the period is concluded, the court will require a statement from the counselor indicating that the marital breakdown is irremediable before the final dissolution is granted. If the counselor perceives a reasonable expectation for reconciliation, the Court may order further counseling for up to 60 additional days.

Note: In Texas, the Clerk of Court is also required to provide information about the availability of marriage counseling services to those filing for dissolution of a marriage.

About the Author: Dr. John W. Luton

Before joining the mass communication faculty at Elizabeth City State University in North Carolina, Dr. Luton served as pastor of churches in Maryland and North Carolina for almost 20 years.

Growing up in northeastern North Carolina, John Luton marveled as his father told stories about his childhood and World War II adventures. Bluebird in Belgium relates those wonderful stories.

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