While many people believe that mutual breakups are nonexistent, there is no better proof that there truly is such a thing as a mutually agreed upon parting of ways than the existence of uncontested divorces. In Houston and throughout the state of Texas, spouses who agree to part ways peacefully and have no issues relating to their divorce may opt for this course of action.
What Is an Uncontested Divorce?
An uncontested divorce is a simplified divorce process in which the two parties involved are able to skip the trial step of divorce; because there is no point of contention, there is nothing for a judge to rule on. Therefore, uncontested divorces can save both parties valuable time and money, as well as mental and emotional energy, that others spend on handling legal issues. Needless to say, should even one significant point of contention arise relating to the divorce, it will be considered contested.
The state deems divorcing couples who meet the following criteria eligible to file an uncontested divorce:
- Alimony is out of the question;
- Both parties agree on the reason for the divorce;
- Both parties want to end the marriage;
- The couple does not have any minor children together;
- No division of property and/or assets is required; and
- Neither spouse is currently filing for bankruptcy.
Unfortunately, it is common for divorcing couples to meet all these requirements save one: the minor children criterion. Thankfully, for couples with minor children, a viable alternative option is an “agreed divorce.” To qualify for this, they must be in agreement on all fronts, and there cannot be any court orders governing alimony or child custody agreements.
Steps to Filing an Uncontested Divorce in Texas
The first step in filing for an uncontested divorce is to meet the residency requirements. Both spouses will need to have lived in the county in which they plan to file for at least three months, as well as in the state for at least six months.
The next step is to either file the divorce claim on your own or with the help of an attorney. It is advisable to retain the help of a legal professional who has experience in this area of the law, as they can expedite the process and prevent you from having to resubmit documents to remedy any mistakes.
For an uncontested divorce, both parties must complete the following forms:
- Military Status Affidavit
- Certificate of Last Known Mailing Address
- Civil Case Information Sheet
- Final Decree of Divorce
- Original Petition for Divorce
- Waiver of Service
The last step is to pay the filing fee and wait to have your divorce finalized by a judge. The state has a 60-day waiting period for all divorcing couples. If there are no issues with your paperwork, a judge will sign your Final Decree of Divorce on the 61st day, finalizing it.
Need legal help with your divorce? Call the Law Offices of Frank E. Mann, P.C. at (713) 903-8112 or contact us online.