In order to file for a divorce in Texas, one of the spouses must reside in Texas for at least six months and be a resident of the county he or she will file in for at least 90 days. Texas is a no fault state and a divorce may be granted on the ground of in supportability, which means that either spouse no longer wishes to remain married. A divorce may also be granted on a fault ground, such as adultery or cruel treatment.

A Texas divorce commences with the filing of an Original Petition for Divorce. The Petitioner must file the Original Petition for Divorce with the county or district clerk in the county where the Petitioner or Respondent has resided for at least 90 days. The Respondent, or person not filing for divorce, can be served the divorce petition either by a Sherriff or process server. He or she may also waive service by signing a Waiver of Service in the presence of a notary. If served, the Respondent must file an answer by 10am on the Monday following the expiration of twenty days. He or she may also hire an attorney. If the Respondent fails to file an answer with the county or district clerk’s office, the Petitioner may ask the court to grant a default divorce, meaning that the Respondent has failed to take any action once served with the Original Petition for Divorce.

There is no legal separation in Texas. Therefore, either party may request the court to grant Temporary Orders while a divorce is being finalized. These orders may relate to any children of the marriage, property of the marriage and any marital debts. Both parties may be required to attend a temporary hearing if they cannot agree to the orders. If temporary orders are granted, these orders will remain in effect until further order of the court or the finalization of the divorce.

There is a 60 day waiting or cooling off period in Texas. This means that you cannot finalize a divorce in Texas until the expiration of 60 days. The only exception to this is if a protective order has been granted. Once the 60 days expire, you may request the court to set a Final Hearing. At the final hearing, each side will present his or her case to the Presiding Judge and will introduce any evidence he or she may have. At the final hearing, the judge will rule on the division of community property and debts as well as put orders in place over the children of the marriage. If the parties reach an agreement before going to a Final hearing one party will need to do a prove up in front of the judge to have the divorce granted. Once the divorce is granted, you must wait 30 days before you may get remarried, unless the court waives the 30 day period in the divorce decree.