Grounds for Divorce in the State of Texas
Most of the divorces in Texas are no-fault, which means that neither spouse accuses the other of causing the divorce. Nevertheless, you will need to tell the court why you are seeking a Texas divorce. This reason is the grounds for your divorce. There are seven basic grounds for divorce in Texas, and they are categorized as either fault or no-fault grounds.
No-Fault Grounds for Divorce
If the grounds for your divorce are no-fault, there is a good chance that the divorce will proceed more smoothly and will be less costly. Those grounds for divorce that fall into the no-fault category include:
Insupportability – The vast majority of Texas divorces cite the grounds of insupportability, which means what you likely think of when you hear irreconcilable differences. These grounds are closely associated with less time-consuming and less costly divorces.
Living Apart – While Texas does not recognize legal separations, it will consider a separation of three years or more as a potentially valid means of securing a no-fault divorce.
Confinement to a Mental Hospital – If your spouse has been confined to a mental hospital for at least three years (with no real chance of recovery), it is an uncommon but not unheard-of mechanism for obtaining a no-fault divorce in Texas.
Whether you seek a divorce based on fault or not, it is always advisable to work closely with an experienced Lampasas family law attorney.
Fault-Based Grounds for Divorce
True to its maverick ways, Texas is one of the last states that continue to offer divorce based on fault. If your divorce is fault-based, the judge in your case can allow your spouse's bad actions to influence his or her determinations regarding the division of your marital property, your alimony, and in some rare cases, your child custody arrangements. The four categories of fault include:
Cruelty – Both physical and emotional abuse can count toward grounds of cruelty. Texas takes domestic violence very seriously, and your primary concern in such situations is ensuring your and your children's safety.
Adultery – Adultery is one of the fault-based grounds for divorce that is cited most often. In order for your divorce to be based on adultery, you must be able to prove that the infidelity happened and that it directly caused your divorce (a tall order).
Felony Conviction – If your spouse has been convicted of a felony charge and has served at least a year behind bars, it is grounds for divorce unless your testimony was the basis of his or her conviction.
Abandonment – In order for abandonment to serve as the grounds for your divorce, your spouse must have left you with no intention of returning and must have been gone for more than a year.
An Experienced Lampasas Family Law Attorney Can Help
If you are moving toward divorce, Brett Pritchard at The Law Office of Brett H. Pritchard in Lampasas, Texas, is an accomplished family law attorney who has the experience, dedication, and legal skill to help. To learn more, please do not hesitate to contact or call us at 254-501-4040 today.