Q:Is there a waiting period to get my divorce in Harris County?
A:In Texas, a family court cannot grant your divorce until at least 60 days have passed since your Original Petition for Divorce was filed. Two exceptions exist to this rule: if your spouse has been convicted of or received deferred adjudication for an offense involving family violence against you or a member of your household you may obtain a divorce sooner than 60 days after the Original Petition for Divorce was filed. Or, if you have an active protective order against your spouse based on a family violence finding you may also obtain the divorce in sooner than 60 days.
Q:Does Texas allow for “no fault” divorces?
A:Texas does allow for no fault divorces. This means that neither you nor your spouse must specify a reason for getting your divorce. Rather, you just need to state in your Petition for Divorce that you are getting divorce due to a discord in personalities and that a reconciliation is not possible. This is known as an insupportability allegation and is how most people get divorced in Texas.
Q:Why would I want to specify a specific fault ground for divorce?
A:Within the Texas Family Code there are certain reasons or “fault grounds” that are specified where you can cite them in your Petition or Counterpetition for Divorce. If you or your spouse is at fault for the divorce, as determined by a family court judge, then this can have an impact on how your community property is divided. Examples of fault grounds for divorce in Texas are adultery, cruel treatment, abandonment, conviction of a felony or long-term incarceration of at least one year or confinement to a mental hospital for at least three years.
Q:Can I get temporary spousal support during my divorce?
A:Yes. Temporary spousal support can be issued in Texas divorces by a family court judge. This is typically done in scenarios where you are either unemployed or earn a significantly smaller salary than does your spouse. You will need to submit a budget for yourself showing a proven need for temporary spousal support in a temporary order hearing if you and your spouse cannot agree to temporary spousal support in mediation. Your spouse would also need to have the income sufficient to pay his or her own bills, child support and your temporary spousal support.
Q:What if my spouse filed for divorce but I want to remain married? Do I have to get a divorce?
A:If your spouse wants to proceed with the divorce, you will get divorced. This is true no matter if you are dead set against the divorce. You and your spouse can attempt to attend therapy or counseling during the divorce to seek a reconciliation or reunification. However, it would take both you and your spouse not wanting to get divorced for the divorce not to occur.