Updated August 11, 2022
Couples who have chosen to divorce are often in a hurry to get it done. This is understandable—filing for divorce is not a happy process, and moving on is the point, which makes dragging out the divorce process seem counterproductive.
There is a mandatory 60-day waiting period in the State of Texas (except under highly specific circumstances), so if you and your divorcing spouse are on the same page and willing to work very hard to compromise and hammer out divorce-related decisions, you could theoretically be divorced in 60 days. However, if you and your divorcing spouse are not in full agreement, it is not likely.
It is important to remember that the terms of your divorce set the framework for your financial future and determine your parental rights, which makes taking the time to do the legwork and obtain fair terms paramount. For help with this process, it is always a good idea to contact an experienced Killeen divorce attorney.
The Four Factors Involved in Your Divorce
Divorcing couples seem to understand that an uncontested divorce is generally preferable to a contested one, but most do not realize that this is in their control. If you and your divorcing spouse agree on the four major elements of divorce, your divorce will be uncontested. If you cannot, the court will need to intervene, and your divorce will be contested.
In other words, if your goal is to shorten the time it takes to finalize your divorce, lower your legal expenses, and tone down the divorce drama, you will need to be willing to make compromises with your divorcing spouse and to work closely with your experienced divorce lawyer who will skillfully negotiate for terms that protect your children’s and your rights.
If you are divorcing, there are four basic factors that must be resolved before your divorce can be finalized. These include the following:
Child Custody Arrangements
Your child custody arrangements will include physical and legal custody. Legal custody pertains to who will make important decisions for your children moving forward. Physical custody, on the other hand, pertains to whom the children live with, and this schedule will be laid out in your parenting plan. Both physical and legal custody can be either sole or joint.
Both of you are required to support your children financially (relative to your ability to do so). Child support payments are calculated according to state guidelines, which leaves little room for variance (except in situations where there are extenuating circumstances, such as a child with special needs).
The Division of Marital Property
Marital property refers to those assets that you and your spouse acquired over the years of your marriage. It does not matter whose name is on the lease or title or who made the purchase; property that you acquire during your marriage is marital property that will be divided in a manner that is considered fair (or equitable) given the circumstances.
An exception to the rule of marital property is inheritances and gifts that are made to one spouse alone. Further, property that you and your spouse bring into your marriage with you and that you keep separate is considered separate property that will remain your own post-divorce.
Spousal Maintenance, or Alimony
Spousal maintenance (also known as alimony) can play a role in your divorce if one of you will experience a financial setback and the other has the financial means to help offset this downturn upon divorce.
If any one of these factors is a sticking point, it will have to be resolved before your divorce can be finalized. Even if you and your spouse are unable to come to an agreement on every element, the more you can sign off on, the less you will need to rely upon the court.
Ways to Find Middle Ground
If you and your spouse have found middle ground on all of the factors listed, you can move through the divorce process more quickly and less expensively—and you may be divorced after 60 days. The fact is, however, that even if you are in perfect harmony on every issue except for one, it is likely going to slow things down considerably.
For example, if you are miles apart on the issue of child custody arrangements it is an issue that is likely to be extremely important to both of you and could take some time to resolve. This does not, however, necessarily mean that you will end up in court over the matter.
If there are issues that must be resolved, you have options, including the following:
Working out a compromise between yourselves that you can both live with
Working through your respective family law attorneys to negotiate an agreement (Contact us online to find an experienced lawyer for your divorce case.)
Obtaining a resolution through divorce mediation
The Divorce Process
The divorce process itself can take some time—even if you are in total agreement on the major issues—and there are several important considerations, including the following:
You must meet the residency requirements: one of you must have lived in the state for at least 6 months, and one of you must have been a resident of the county you file in for at least 90 days prior to filing.
You will need to provide considerable documentation.
You must file an Original Petition for Divorce: this is when the 60-day clock begins ticking.
You must provide your spouse with legal notice.
Once you have proceeded through the entire divorce process and come to an agreement on every divorce issue, you will still need to appear before the court very briefly in order for your divorce to be finalized. In other words, if your divorce is truly uncontested, and you are motivated to work quickly, it is possible to obtain a 60-day divorce in Texas.
Call a Killeen Family Law Attorney Today to Schedule a Consultation
An uncontested divorce is a worthy pursuit, and Brett Pritchard at The Law Office of Brett H. Pritchard in Killeen, Texas, is a dedicated family law attorney who is committed to helping you obtain a divorce that works for you and your children. For more information, please do not hesitate to contact us online or call us at (254) 781-4222 today.