A suit for divorce may not be maintained in this state unless at the time the suit is filed either the petitioner or the respondent has been: (1) a domiciliary of this state for the preceding six-month period; and (2) a resident of the county in which the suit is filed for the preceding 90-day period.
If you have minor children living with your spouse in another state for over six months then you should consider filing in that state as that court has jurisdiction over the children. You spouse can waive that jurisdiction in writing.
County of Filing:
You should file the divorce in the county your spouse lives in, or in the county that you both lived in when you separated, or in your county if your spouse lives out of state. You or your spouse must have a Texas address in the county of filing. Texas civilian residents living overseas may file in Texas if they have maintained their residency in Texas.
Active duty members of the military (or their spouses) may file in Texas if they have been stationed in Texas for six months or were residents of Texas when they entered active duty. Smart Divorce.com staff includes former active duty officers and enlisted personnel and are completely knowledgeable on the special military requirements and the “Soldiers and Sailors Civil Relief Act”. Our staff prides themselves on the service they provide our military members.
GROUNDS FOR DIVORCE: NO-FAULT or FAULT ?
Insupportability. On the petition of either party to a marriage, the court may grant a divorce without regard to fault if the marriage has become insupportable because of discord or conflict of personalities that destroys the legitimate ends of the marital relationship and prevents any reasonable expectation of reconciliation.
WAITING PERIOD:The court may not grant a divorce before the 60th day after the date the suit was filed. You may remarry 30 days after the divorce is complete.
PROPERTY OF THE MARRIAGE:
In a divorce, the property (land, house, buildings, and items of personal property) owned (and debts owed) by the couple is divided between the parties. In an uncontested divorce, this division is accomplished by means of a Marital Separation Agreement (MSA). You and your spouse must agree to the property and debt division and memorialize your agreement in the Marital Separation Agreement, which will be incorporated by reference into the Decree of Divorce that ultimately ends your marriage. You may agree to divide the property any way you like, as long as a basic fairness is maintained. You do not need to list items already divided or not an important issue in the divorce. You may revise the MSA after receipt of the documents from us by sending an email with your changes. There is never a charge for revisions at any time up to one year.
If you cannot agree on any item of this division, the dissolution of marriage transforms into a contested divorce. If at the final hearing the divorce is still contested we do not provide advice for that hearing. You may need to consult an attorney or be prepared to tell the judge why you feel your requested division of property is fair.
Spousal Support is either agreed upon by the parties or determined by the judge in a contested hearing. We cannot give legal advice regarding spousal support but will include your request in the documents.
The questionnaire you fill out will outline the custody, visitation and support for the children. We will prepare the documents accordingly, and we will also prepare a Marital Separation Agreement (at no additional cost) which outlines in specific detail all the provisions regarding the children. Both parties must attend the parenting class or get a waiver. A list of the places in Texas to attend may be obtained from the court. Check with the court to see if you can attend online at: http://positiveparentingthroughdivorce.com/?lt_c=goo1&gclid=CM3g-J_VppMCFQu8iQodGDaf4w.
The child support will either be an amount you and your spouse agree upon, or it will be determined for you by the court, according to the Texas Child Support Guidelines. If you wish the court to calculate the amount then you will need to file the standardized Child Support Guidelines form and Child Support Income Statement/Affidavit which we provide. See “Texas Child Support Calculator” on any search engine such as Google, Yahoo, MSN, etc.
You may have Joint Legal Custody or Sole Legal Custody. This determines how the decisions are made regarding the raising of the child(ren).
Physical custody may be with one residential parent or “SPLIT CUSTODY” where the child(ren) live a substantial time with each parent.
This can be any program agreed upon by the parties and may change from time to time. If the parties cannot agree then the state guidelines are in effect. State guidelines are outlined in the MSA provided with your documents. You do not need to list your present visitation agreement as it will change from time to time but you may if you wish. “No Visitation” or “Restricted Visitation” may be requested by supplying the reason on the questionnaire.
You must file the divorce documents in the Circuit Court in the county that you are filing in. Some court addresses for larger counties are as follows:
Dallas County 101st District Court: 600 Commerce, Room 480, Dallas, 75202-4606 Phone: (214)653-7256
Tarrant County 141st District Court: 401 W Belknap, Fort Worth, 76196-0224 Phone: (817) 884-1997
Collin County 199th District Court: 210 S McDonald, Ste 534, McKinney, 75069-7602 Phone: (972) 424-1460
Travis County 126th District Court: 1000 Guadalupe, Ste 436, Austin, 78701 Phone: (512) 854-9313
McLennan County 170th District Court: 501 Washington Ave, Ste 303, Waco, 76701-1380 Phone: (254) 757-5045
Houston County 349th District Court: 500 N Church St, Palestine, 75801 Phone: (903) 723-7415
Jefferson County 136th District Court: 1001 Pearl St, Beaumont, 77701-3707 Phone: (409) 835-8481
Bexar County 131st District Court: 100 Dolorosa St, #202, San Antonio, 78205-3028 Phone: (210) 335-2521
Nueces County 105th District Court: 901 Leopard, Ste 802, Corpus Christi, 78401 Phone: (361) 888-0510
Cameron County 103rd District Court: 974 E Harrison, Brownsville, 78520-7123 Phone: (956) 544-0844
Webb County 111th District Court: 1110 Victoria, Ste 301, Laredo, 78042-1598 Phone: (956) 523-4223
El Paso 120th District Court: 500 E San Antonio, #605, El Paso, 79901-2457 Phone: (915) 546-2103
Lubbock County 137th District Court: 904 Broadway, 3rd Fl, Lubbock, 79408 Phone: (806) 775-1019
Taylor County 104th District Court: 300 Oak St, Abilene, 79602-1521 Phone: (325) 674-1313
Potter County 108th District CourtCourt: 501 S Fillmore St, Ste 4-A, Amarillo, 79101-2449 Phone: (806) 379-2355
Wichita County 30th District Court: 900 7th St, Rm 360, Wichita Falls, 76301 Phone: (940) 766-8180
Galveston County 10th District Court: 600 59th St, Rm 3204, Galveston, 77551 Phone: (409) 766-2230
Midland County 142nd District Court: 200 W Wall, Ste 300, Midland, 79701-4557 Phone: (432) 688-4375
The court filing fees for a divorce in Texas is approximately $239 to $299 depending on type of service.
There are no additional fees for an uncontested divorce.
You may call the Clerk of the Court in your county to determine the exact fees in your county.
METHODS OF SERVICE:
1. The most common way is to have your spouse sign the documents AFTER you have filed the complaint with the court. You can hand deliver the documents , mail them or have a third party deliver them to your spouse. This method is available even though your spouse is incarcerated.
2. If your spouse will not sign or you not not sure if your spouse will sign then you can get service by having the sheriff in spouse’s county serve a copy of the filed documents along with other documents requiring spouse’s signature. You can contact the sheriff in any state to serve your spouse. You can also get service by Certified Mail, (Return Receipt Requested) if your spouse lives out of state. If your spouse is incarcerated then you can get service by having the prison/jail officials serve your spouse.
3. Service by publication. If you cannot find your spouse after a diligent search then you can publish. The publication fee for the newspaper is approximately $65 but varies for different counties. Upon the filing of the Affidavit the clerk shall direct that service of notice be made by publication in a newspaper of general circulation in the county in which the complaint is filed. We provide all the required documents for service by publication.
Go to our questionnaire and get started today.