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Finding fault in a Texas divorce

| Sep 16, 2020 | Divorce |

Few spouses decide to file for divorce without reason. Some marriages fall apart due to dishonesty or infidelity. Criminal activity or mishandling of finances can create rifts in a marriage, too. Whatever the reason for divorce, Texas divorce law handles fault in a unique way.

Like all states in the U.S., Texas allows for a no-fault divorce. Without grounds, states usually list “irreconcilable differences” as the reason. In Texas, courts list reasons in no-fault divorce as “insupportability,” a unique determination among states.

The differences in a Texas divorce

Texas defines their “insupportability” statute as a “discord or conflict of personalities that destroys the legitimate ends of the marital relationship and prevents any reasonable expectation of reconciliation.” Few Texans defend against divorce, as many courts see the disagreement to divorce as preventing any “reasonable expectation of reconciliation.”

Texas courts will also accept divorce cases with accusations of fault. Accepted grounds for divorce include cruelty, conviction of a felony, legal separation (living apart), abandonment, adultery, or admittance to a mental hospital. Texas law does require a spouse to live in Texas for six consecutive months before filing, however.

Texas law mandates a 60-day waiting period from the filing of the petition before granting a divorce. This statute is in line with many states in the U.S.

Division of property

The State of Texas was originally under Spanish rule, so it is a community property state. The state regards all assets acquired during a marriage as community property and will divide them evenly between spouses. Individual property falls into three categories:

  • Assets acquired before the marriage;
  • Assets received as a gift or inheritance to one spouse;
  • Assets awarded as recovery for personal injury

The courts will consider fault when dividing property. In cases of no-fault divorce, property division defaults to a 50-50 split, but the court will hear arguments of unequal earning too.

Considering divorce? Establish grounds with legal consultation

Spouses considering divorce find more success working with a local attorney familiar with Texas family law. An attorney can help pinpoint fault, build a case and draft comprehensive divorce agreements.

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