If you are facing a divorce, you have questions, but you are not alone. The answers to the following frequently asked questions can help make the divorce process more manageable. While every divorce is specific to its unique circumstances, these divorce basics apply across the board.
How Long Will My Divorce Take?
Every divorce follows its a certain path, and some take much longer than others, but the following general rules apply:
- Every divorce in Texas is subject to a 60-day waiting period between the time of filing for divorce and finalization. While a divorce can conceivably be finalized this quickly, even the most amicable divorces generally take a bit longer.
- The closer you and your divorcing spouse are on the primary decisions that need to be hammered out, the less time you will need to spend on the legal process.
- If your divorce is especially contentious, involves a high amount of assets, involves a business, or is a gray divorce, the process is likely to take considerably longer than a simple, uncontested divorce.
What Are the Steps of Divorce?
A Texas divorce follows a basic six-step process that includes:
- The Petition of Divorce
- Temporary orders (for child support, child custody arrangements, and/or spousal support in the interim, if applicable)
- Evidence discovery in which you exchange financial information and other important documentation applicable to your divorce
- Settlement negotiations that can include negotiations between you and your spouse, between your respective divorce attorneys (on your behalf); and between you and your spouse (with the aid of your respective divorce attorneys) at mediation
- Trial (if you are unable to come to terms on your own)
- Divorce terms finalized
What Does Divorce Involve?
While every divorce is as unique as the two individuals involved, the basic components of divorce are the same across the board and include (as applicable):
- Child Custody Arrangements – Child custody arrangements are naturally the primary concern of every divorcing couple who shares children. Generally, both parents share legal custody, which means you will make important decisions regarding your children's education, religious upbringing, and health care together. Further, most parents also share physical custody, but one is usually the primary custodial parent, and the other has a visitation schedule.
- Division of Marital Property – In Texas, marital property (that you acquired together as a married couple) is divided in a manner that is deemed just and right (or fairly) rather than equally.
- Child Support – Child support is usually determined according to the state’s calculation guidelines.
- Spousal Support – Spousal support (or alimony) is not a certainty, but the judge can order such support if one divorcing spouse does not have the financial means to support himself or herself and the other spouse has the financial means to offset the shortage.
An Experienced Attorney Can Help
If you are facing divorce, attorney Brett Pritchard at The Law Office of Brett H. Pritchard in Killeen is committed to skillfully advocating for divorce terms that protect your rights and that work for you. For more information, please do not hesitate to contact or call us at 254-501-4040 today.