What Does a No-Fault Divorce in Texas Mean?
Separation and divorce are difficult facts of life. If you’re researching a no-fault divorce in Texas, you’re likely facing this difficulty, too. It’s no secret that the divorce rate in the U.S. is hovering around 50 percent. It’s been about that for some time now, and it’ll probably remain around there for the foreseeable future.
There are countless reasons why a couple may file for divorce—infidelity, emotional or physical abuse or simply because one or both of the persons have fallen out of love. Whatever the case may be, filing for a divorce in Houston is as common as it is anywhere else in the country. Divorce typically falls into two categories: fault-based divorce and no-fault divorce in Texas.
A short history of divorce in Texas
Did you know that a no-fault divorce in Texas wasn’t always possible? Historically, Texas law required one of the spouses to declare a reason for filing for divorce. Although that is no longer the case, some still feel it is necessary to put fault on their spouse for the separation.
The most significant reason some may file for fault-based divorce is to win more of the couple’s assets in court. But even proving a fault ground in Texas does not guarantee you a disproportionate share of the community assets. Common circumstances that qualify for fault-based divorce include:
- Living more than three years apart
- If one of the persons involved has a felony conviction
- If one of the persons has been admitted to a mental hospital
- If one of the spouses has been abandoned by the other
Although this sometimes sounds like a good idea upfront, many couples regret this confrontational approach later down the road—especially when the couple also has children to consider. Sadly, tough divorces can bring out the ugly, such as hiding income to avoid child support. This is why the gentler approach of a no-fault divorce in Texas is often the smarter route to take in a separation.
The no-fault divorce in Texas
Filing for a no-fault divorce in Texas—also commonly called insupportability—is often an easier and much smoother process. As the name states, a no-fault divorce in Texas does not assign blame to any party. The central idea is that the marriage is no longer working due to “irreconcilable differences.” Most importantly, a no-fault divorce often signifies that both parties are trying to move forward with their lives.
If at all possible, it’s probably the smart play for you and your family. Filing for a no-fault divorce puts both parties involved on an equal playing field. It not only opens the door for equal asset retention of the couple’s belongings, but it also leaves the door open for a civil relationship moving forward.
Most couples that are married have spent many years together and have, at some point, loved each other—even if that’s not the case still. Filing for a no-fault divorce is a much more peaceful way of parting ways with each other. Especially when the couple has kids to take into consideration, a no-fault divorce makes the process and the aftermath much easier to deal with for all parties involved.
Is a no-fault divorce best for you?
Deciding which type of divorce to file for isn’t always as easy choice. Sometimes, one of the persons involved is much more to blame in the separation. Sometimes, both spouses are partially to blame. But every case is different, even with no-fault divorces in Texas.
You may have questions regarding your specific case, such as, “Is adultery in Texas illegal?” or, “Is a divorce in Texas 50/50?”. Sometimes an arrangement such as a prenuptial agreement in Texas may need to be examined. It’s always best to share your questions and specifics with an experienced Houston divorce attorney.
Thiessen Law Firm often recommends filing for the no-fault divorce in Texas. Most of the time, they are much easier on all parties involved, including the kids if the spouses have any. No-fault divorces are more civil in nature; this option keeps all doors open and transparent for everyone. Remember, if you have children, you still may need to work out more details moving forward, such as a joint custody visitation schedule. No-fault divorces can help deciding those matters start on civil, reasonable footing.
How to file for no-fault divorce in Texas
No-fault Texas divorce forms can be intimidating at first glance, but they don’t have to be. By Texas law, no-fault divorce papers state that the marriage has become “insupportable due to conflict between the parties and that there is no reasonable expectation of reconciliation.”
Simply put, as long as both parties in question are rational and willing to work together, no-fault divorces in Texas are easier and cheaper for everyone involved. Requirements for no-fault divorces in Texas include:
- One of the spouses must have lived in the state where the papers are being filed for at least 6 months and in the county for a minimum of 90 days.
- Complete the Original Petition for Divorce Form, request for service and a few other forms outlining how the two spouses would like to proceed with negotiating assets and property.
- Couples with children will also have to fill out paperwork outlining the children’s possessions, child support order, medical support, etc.
Thiessen Law Firm not only walks every involved party through this process, but we make sure that it is as easy as possible for everyone. Once all parties involved agree to the terms of the divorce, they can also complete a Divorce Settlement Agreement, which outlines all terms of the divorce. Keep in mind that no-fault divorces can be amended later to add a fault ground; depending on the court’s time lines and your scheduling order, original petitions can always be amended.
Need help with a no-fault divorce?
If you have questions regarding a no-fault Texas divorce or if you are looking for a Houston divorce attorney, please contact Thiessen Law Firm for immediate assistance. We will help you decide which type of divorce is right for you, and we’ll walk you through your specific questions (e.g., things to discuss in divorce mediation, how long the divorce may take, etc.) through these difficult times and make sure they go as smoothly as possible for everyone involved.