Highly Rated Katy Divorce Lawyer
Qualified, Experienced, and Local Divorce Representation
Divorce can severely upend every aspect of a person’s life, and it is also one of the hardest decisions to make. With the help of a Katy divorce lawyer, however, navigating the process of divorce in Texas becomes a little easier. We understand the profound emotional impact divorce can have on a person, and how difficult it can be to navigate the critical decisions related to it. What you need in this difficult time is committed and responsive representation, which is done keeping your best interests in mind.
As if these emotional issues were not enough, divorce often involves many practical considerations as well. Who will get the house? Will the children primarily live with one of you or will you split time? Will your spouse provide you with financial support or will you be required to pay alimony? The way that these and other issues are resolved can have a direct impact on your life and your future, so it is critically important to do everything possible to protect your legal rights. In almost every case, this starts with contacting an experienced Katy divorce attorney in Texas.
Contact the team at The Vendt Law Firm, P.L.L.C. by calling (832) 276-9474
Requirements for a Divorce in Katy, Texas
Some couples who decide to get divorced want it to be over immediately. Unfortunately, the process can take a considerable amount of time. At The Vendt Law Firm, P.L.L.C., we are committed to helping you navigate the process from start to finish, striving to simplify matters and make your life more stress-free.
As if making the decision to seek a divorce is not difficult enough, you also have to follow specific legal steps and meet certain requirements in order to have a divorce granted. Texas requires you to cite specific grounds for why you want the marriage to be legally ended.
Grounds for divorce in Texas include:
- Discord or conflict have led the marriage to be insupportable with no expectation of reconciliation
- Cruelty on the part of one spouse
- One spouse committed a felony that led to imprisonment of at least one year and no pardon occurred
- One spouse abandoned the other for one year or longer
- Separation without cohabitation for three years or longer
- One spouse has a mental disorder that has required them to live in a mental health facility for three years or longer with unlikely hope for recovery
It is important to carefully choose the appropriate grounds for divorce that applies to your specific situation. In supportability is a no-fault based ground for divorce, so it is often easier to prove and is more commonly used. If you do choose to cite any fault-based grounds, you will be expected to provide evidence to support those grounds to the court. This can often lead to a very personal and contentious battle if the other spouse fights against the grounds cited. Our skilled Katy divorce lawyer can help you determine the best grounds for your divorce and can help you prove any fault-based grounds if necessary.
Our Katy Divorce Lawyers Are Committed to Favorably Resolving Contested Issues in Divorce
Unfortunately, not every couple who decides to get a divorce is able to agree on the way that issues related to their divorce will be resolved. In fact, if you have decided to get divorced, it is possible that your relationship with your spouse has degraded to the point that you are unable to communicate in a productive way. In acrimonious divorces where the issues are contested, it is crucial that each party retains a skilled and experienced Katy divorce attorney in order to ensure that their rights are protected.
At The Vendt Law Firm, PLLC, we regularly work with clients with disputes related to:
- Property division
- Child custody
- Spousal support/alimony
Providing Ongoing Representation in Katy
Our representation does not necessarily end when your divorce is over. The ways that issues related to child custody, child support, and alimony are resolved at the time of your divorce are based on the circumstances that exist at that time. As we all know, things change as we go through life, sometimes dramatically. Our lawyer is available to help those who are seeking to modify or prevent modification to court orders related to support and custody.
Some of the events that may warrant a modification to a court order related to a divorce include:
- A job offer
- A health crisis
- Evidence of drug or alcohol abuse on the part of the other parent
- Physical abuse
Going through a divorce is difficult. The good news is that you do not have to do it alone. Our attorney is dedicated to providing individuals in the area with compassionate and effective legal representation that takes their needs and goals into account.
Filing for a Divorce in Texas
If you are considering filing for a divorce, you are not alone. Every year, around 40-50 percent of marriages end in divorce. According to a Statista report, Texas recorded around 1.5 divorces per 1,000 inhabitants in 2020. It is important to understand the process of filing for a divorce if you want to navigate this procedure easily.
In order to file for a divorce in the state of Texas, one of the partners must possess state residency for a continuous period of 6 months. When the divorce is filed from a county, it is important that one of the partners has been a resident of that county for a minimum of 90 days. You can either file a no-fault or a fault-based divorce in Texas. In a no-fault divorce, all you have to do is inform the judge that there are no ways to fix the marriage and that it is over by a mutual decision. A fault-based divorce, however, requires some grounds. In the state of Texas, the following are considered to be acceptable grounds for divorce –
- Abandonment for a min of 1 year
- Living apart or being separated for a min of 3 years
- If a spouse commits a felony and is incarcerated for a min of 1 year
- Confinement to a mental hospital
Process of a Divorce in Katy, Texas
A typical divorce process in Texas takes place in the following manner –
- One of the spouses, who is the petitioner, files for a divorce with the court. The divorce papers are personally served to the Respondent, which is the other spouse. In case the spouses are filing for a divorce together, the Responder can choose not to have the divorce papers personally served by signing a waiver.
- The petitioner also has the option to request the issuance of a Temporary Restraining Order against the other spouse during the time of filing. When a Temporary Restraining Order is issued, the courts usually have to schedule the hearing in less than 14 days after the issuance date. The court might turn the Temporary Restraining Order into an injunction (temporary) against both parties.
- After the divorce papers are served to the Respondent, they have around 20 days to file an Answer to the papers. The court also usually considers temporary orders, which are in effect until the divorce procedure is pending. Temporary orders can include temporary visitation, custody of children, and temporary property use with debt servicing. It can also include temporary alimony or spousal support, besides the payment of the fees of the interim divorce attorney.
- If the partners feel that they have not obtained all the necessary information they require from each other, they can start a process known as discovery. In this process, the spouses exchange documents and information that are important for the divorce.
- Thereafter, the spouses can discuss case settlement, which can either be done directly (informally) or with the help of mediators or lawyers. If the spouses are able to come to an agreement on most things, the divorce lawyer of one of the spouses prepares something known as the Agreed Decree of Divorce. This will contain everything about the terms of the agreement. The spouses and the lawyers sign this decree, after which it is presented to the court for approval and signature from the judge.
- If the spouses were not able to come to an agreement on the major issues, they can decide to go for a trial.
- Before undergoing trial, the spouses have to attempt something known as mediation. This is an informal process, through which both the parties agree to cooperate with a neutral third party or the mediator, to discuss, negotiate and settle the terms of conflict. If the process of mediation fails, the date for the trial is set.
- After the trial concludes, one of the lawyers prepares a Final Decree of Divorce, which is presented to the judge to obtain his signatures. The final decree will consist of all the rulings of the court related to the divorce. Both of the parties would be bound by the stated rulings from this point forward.
How can we help in protecting your interests?
When any client turns to us for legal guidance for divorce, our primary focus is to provide them with a sense of ease as they make this big transition. Divorce proceedings can be quite complex and with the help of Vendt Law Firm’s divorce attorneys, you can ensure that the process is as straightforward as possible. We understand that vital interests are at stake during this point, and it can be difficult to know how to proceed and what to do. Our lawyers will ensure that the best options are laid out for you, and they will also fight to obtain the best possible resolution.
- We offer zealous and committed legal advice and services to our clients.
- We provide all our clients with one-on-one personal counsel.
- We always remain accessible to our clients for any questions or concerns.
- Our aim is to foster a non-confrontational and comfortable environment.
The Most Frequently Asked Questions About Divorce
1. How Do I File for a Divorce?
To initiate a divorce, the party that is seeking the divorce must first file a petition with the District Court of the country where either person lives. The party who files is called the “petitioner,” and the other party is called the “respondent.”
If you are the one filing, you need to give the other party notice. You will do this legally, with what is commonly referred to as “getting served.”
The respondent must file an answer within 21 days. If they don’t, they won’t be able to avoid a default judgment. If your the respondent, you want to avoid a default judgment, or the chance to assert your legal rights.
A default judgment will affect certain important factors such as child custody, alimony, and division of property and assets. If you are being served, you’ll want to make sure you contact a lawyer as soon as possible so that you can better protect yourself.
2. How Will the Custody of My Children Be Decided?
In court, child custody is usually decided through examining the situation that would be in the best interest of the child or children involved. Certain things will be brought to the court’s attention, such as who the child is currently living with, their relationship with each parent, as well as who could best care for the child.
Many courts are veering towards equal custody if it works for the situation and individuals involved. That being said, child custody is the most common contested issue in divorce court. Both parents have strong feelings towards their children and what is right for them, making this a difficult part of the divorce process.
A divorce attorney will help you to get the best possible outcome for you regarding your custody of your children.
3. How Is Property Divided During a Divorce?
Unless proven otherwise, all property is considered marital property. Examples of separate properties are properties owned by a spouse prior to marriage or property that was gifted or inherited. The earning power of each spouse will also be taken into consideration when dividing property.
Contributions made by each spouse during the marriage, such as education or career development will also be analyzed. Return on retirement will be taken into consideration, as will the custodial parent, who will typically stay in the marital home.
This division can become difficult, as it will have an impact on your financial situation. Sometimes assets are difficult to divide or to determine the value of. Real estate, retirements, investments and owned businesses will all be taken into consideration when dividing assets.
4. What Is the Difference Between a Legal Separation and a Divorce?
In a legal separation, you are still legally married. In a divorce, the marriage is dissolved and legal ties are broken between you and your former spouse. There are many reasons people chose to legally separate before or instead of a divorce.
For instance, a legal separation allows you to remain on a joint health insurance plan. It can also help you to get to the 10-year mark that is necessary in order to draw on other parties’ social security benefits. Before going through a divorce, it is a good idea to consider a legal separation first and see if these benefits will be worth it to you both.
5. How Much Will My Divorce Cost?
The cost of divorce differs depending on the situation. The cost of your divorce will be determined by factors such as the complexity of the case as well as if certain things are contested in court. Typically, the more adversarial the divorce, the more it will cost.
Besides attorney costs, you may also be responsible for filing fees or a divorce mediator. Large, valuable property or businesses may need to be appraised by a divorce financial analyst, which will be an additional cost for you and the other party.
6. What Is Alimony?
In many divorce cases, alimony refers to one party giving the other regular payments required by law. There are certain things that will be taken into consideration to determine if alimony will be required or not.
Typically, the court will take into consideration that the married couple was considered a single unit. For example, if a spouse sacrificed a career to care for the home and children, the court may decide that this spouse will need spousal maintenance.
Spousal maintenance can have great financial impacts on both parties, so it’s best to find a divorce lawyer who can fight for your financial needs.
If you are seeking spousal maintenance, you will want to make sure that you can prove that you will need financial support following the divorce. Make sure you have ways of proving that you will need spousal support to cover your basic needs.
Your Divorce Questions Answered
You do not need to face the complex process of a divorce on your own. If you are looking for a divorce lawyer in Katy, Texas, then the Vendt Law Firm is the best option for you. The skilled divorce attorneys in our firm can help in guiding you through the divorce process in Texas with committed representation. If you are looking for legal representation for your case, you can contact us today!
To learn more about how we can help you, call our office today at (832) 276-9474.