Getting a divorce is never easy. That is because it is an experience that comes with a lot of anger, anxiety, and stress. There are two types of divorce in Texas: contested divorce and uncontested divorce. In a contested divorce, the spouses can’t agree on terms. Dealing with a contested divorce is the hardest process to go through. A contested divorce is time-consuming, costly, and creates a hostile environment.
Whatever type of divorce you are going through, you should strongly consider consulting with a highly experienced divorce lawyer in the Woodlands, Texas.
The good news is that our firm is here to help you through this time by offering legal counsel and representation. We will help you save time, money, and the stress that comes with the process. You need the best contested divorce lawyer in The Woodlands by your side. That is because it is probably going to affect your life in the future. You need an attorney who knows and understands the legal process very well.
At Bolton Law, we have a team of highly skilled and experienced lawyers who are ready to take action. Call us today at 281-351-7897 to find out more about how we can help you, answer any questions you may have, and receive legal counsel.
What Does Contested Divorce Mean?
A contested divorce is a divorce where both parties disagree on issues. This can be anything from property to alimony, child support, child custody, and others. Remember, a divorce is often complicated because it involves disagreeing parties on one or more issues.
If one spouse wants a divorce and the other does not, the Texas family court will consider it as contested. Because the spouses do not agree on issues, contested divorces are usually time-consuming and expensive. That is because it involves a lot of time in court, comes with higher lawyer fees, and a prolonged trial.
What Is the Difference Between Contested and Uncontested Divorces?
As you probably know, there are two types of divorces in Texas. These are contested and uncontested divorces. A contested divorce means the two sides disagree on the terms, such as child custody, marital property and debts, spousal support, and child support.
The primary differences between the two types of divorce are the legal process, time, and cost. Although the cost of filing a divorce is the same, spouses going through a contested divorce will spend more money and time. Do not forget the fact that, based on your situation, you may need the services of expert witnesses like appraisers, financial consultants, and others (who will surely charge for their services).
As it is common in most states, a judge is required to wait a specified amount of time before finalizing a divorce. Unless there was family violence, the judge must wait at least 60 days after the divorce petition was filed. However, with a contested divorce, the wait time may be considerably longer due to case proceedings and other divorce-related issues.
Other differences are:
The term “contested” refers to just that (a dispute), and just like any dispute, it can go on and on and on. Because of this, spouses will have to go through many steps before the divorce is finalized, which are:
- Divorce petition preparation, filing, and service. This is a legal document that requests a divorce, and it states the grounds or reason for the divorce.
- Make a response to the petition.
- Legal advice from a family lawyer
- Participating in the divorce investigation. This is an information-gathering process that comes with different legal processes.
- Pursuing pre-trial legal action and hearting. At this stage, both parties will try to negotiate or come up with a settlement proposal.
- Going to trial (in the event that negotiations fail)
- Filing an appeal (if you dispute the decision of the judge)
Remember, with a contested divorce, the judge will issue a final order showing all the judge’s decisions after the trial.
With an uncontested divorce, things are much easier compared to a contested divorce. With this type, it means that the spouses agree on all issues related to the divorce. Although, according to Texas law, some specific factors must be met. This is why it is wise to consult a lawyer. The best thing about an uncontested divorce is that it helps preserve the relationship between the spouses, which is best when it comes to other issues such as child custody and support.
The divorcing spouses must work towards a mutually agreeable resolution to resolve all divorce issues. If both parties have agreed to proceed with an uncontested divorce but have trouble communicating with each other, they can participate in mediation.
Mediation is a voluntary process where a neutral third party facilitates a conversation between the spouses. After the spouses agree, a draft agreement will be drafted, which is later presented to the court. The court will go through the documents and, if satisfied with everything, it will become a legally binding document. At that moment, it will become a divorce order.
What Are the Reasons for Contesting a Divorce?
It is important to note that Texas is a no-fault divorce state. This means that a spouse does not have to prove the other spouse did anything wrong to get divorced. Uncontested divorces are generally no-fault divorces.
Texas has specific grounds for a fault-based divorce. These include:
- Felony conviction
- Confinement to a mental hospital for at least 3 years
If one spouse files for divorce on fault-based grounds, the other may dispute the claims leading to a contested divorce. There are many other reasons why divorces become contested.
Common issues in a contested divorce include:
- Amount of child support
- Child custody
- Visitation schedule
- Property division
- Who will retain control over the family home
- The amount of spousal support and the grounds for it
An experienced contested divorce lawyer in The Woodlands will know the laws on these issues and be able to advocate for your interests.
Do I Need a Contested Divorce Lawyer in The Woodlands?
Because divorce is not easy, we recommend speaking to a lawyer. Your lawyer is in a better position to provide legal counsel and the legal options you have based on your case. Call our Texas family lawyers today to learn more about your legal options.
For a contested divorce in the Woodlands, Texas, consult our attorneys.
At Bolton Law, we value our clients and make it our job to ensure you get the best arrangement possible when it comes to a contested divorce. Remember, the divorce process comes with many other factors, such as property division, child custody, child support, and more. If you are in a contested divorce, you have a lot on the line.
If you find yourself in this situation, do not hesitate to contact a contested divorce attorney in the Woodlands, Texas. Get in touch with us at 281-351-7897.