Whether you’ve been married for a few months or a couple of decades, if you find yourself thinking that your marriage isn’t healthy or happy, divorce may be in your future. Each state has its own rules about divorce, which is one reason why there are so many myths and misconceptions floating around about divorce proceedings.
Understanding the basics of how Texas specifically handles divorce cases in the family courts can make you feel more comfortable moving forward with the end of your marriage.
You don’t need grounds or to prove fault for a divorce
There was once a time when a person who wanted to file a petition for divorce would need to have a compelling reason to convince the courts to issue one. Spousal abuse, infidelity, mental health issues and other severe problems were typically the only grounds that would convince a court to grant a divorce.
Modern, no-fault divorces don’t require grounds. Instead, only one spouse has to affirm that the marital union has experienced a severe breakdown from which they do not believe recovery is possible. No-fault divorce is it faster and more affordable because you don’t have to spend time submitting evidence to the courts about your spouse’s bad behavior.
Texas is a community property state for asset division
There are a variety of different legal standards that the courts can employ to determine the best way to split up a couple’s assets. Texas is a community property state.
The courts will assume that assets and most debts acquired during marriage are marital assets. With the exception of separate property, such as an inheritance or gifts, any assets acquired during marriage will likely be subject to division in a Texas divorce.
While many states do not adjust community property division based on marital misconduct, Texas sometimes will. That could mean that filing a divorce on grounds and proving infidelity could be in your best interests, depending on the circumstances of your marriage.
The Texas courts focus on what the children need for custody cases
When there are minor children shared between a couple going through a divorce, the Texas courts will focus on the best interests of those children when trying to determine the best way to split custody between the parents.
In most cases, the courts affirm shared custody as the best solution for minor children, although they may grant sole custody to one parent in situations involving abuse, neglect, abandonment, addiction or extreme mental health problems.