Options for Ending a Marriage in Texas
Going through a divorce is never an easy task. The fact that each of our 50 great states puts its own spin on how the proceedings will go makes it even more complicated. Nevertheless, if you are facing the end of your marriage, it is important to understand what your options are in Texas.
Legal Separation In Texas?
Texas makes no provisions for legal separations. Since Texas is a community property state, simply living apart doesn’t alter the fact that anything you acquire while you live apart remains marital property until you are legally divorced. For instance, your salary is marital property until your divorce is final. In other words, even if you live separately from your spouse for years, you remain legally married until you are legally divorced. The assets you gain during your separation are still considered shared property of your marriage until the divorce is final.
A Texas Annulment
When a court declares your marriage not legally valid, it’s an annulment. Rather than ending your marriage, an annulment specifies that you were never legally married in the first place. The specifications for obtaining an annulment, however, are highly exacting (and they all relate to when the marriage took place):
- If one of you was underage
- If you (as the party asking for an annulment) was under the influence of alcohol or narcotics
- If one of you concealed a divorce that occurred within the previous 30 days
- If the marriage occurred within fewer than 72 hours of the marriage license’s issue
- If permanent impotency, fraud, duress, force, mental incapacity, consanguinity (being too closely related), or bigamy plays a role in the marriage
Obviously, an annulment is a longshot when it comes to ending your marriage in Texas—but it does happen.
Grounds For Divorce
Texas grants both fault and no-fault divorces. Texas recognizes several grounds (or reasons) for a fault-based divorce, which include cruelty, adultery, conviction of a felony, abandonment of at least one year, living separately for three or more years, or confinement in a mental hospital for three or more years.
Because it’s a much more straightforward process, it’s far more common for couples in Texas to obtain no-fault divorces. While a divorce based on fault could lead to the court granting you more than half of the marital assets, it is typically a much more litigious—and therefore timely, expensive, and stressful—process. Divorce is messy, but a no-fault divorce can help to simplify the process.
If You’re Considering Divorce, Contact a Katy, Texas, Divorce Attorney Today
If you’re considering a Texas divorce, it is in your best interest to consult with a Sugar Land, Texas divorce attorney. Every divorce is difficult, but legal guidance will help you navigate through the process more efficiently and more effectively—after all, the outcome of your divorce will have a significant effect on your family’s future. Attorney Frank J. Vendt at The Vendt Law Firm, P.L.L.C., focuses on legal guidance that’s based on the best solution for you and your children. Mr. Vendt is here to help, so please contact or call our office at (832) 276-9474 to schedule an appointment today.