There are many offhand phrases that imply that it’s cheaper to stay married than seek a divorce in Texas. Of course, everyone knows that money isn’t enough to hold a relationship together when it’s time for it to end. Still, people want to avoid financial hardship as much as possible — and this leaves many asking how to file for divorce in Texas without a lawyer.
Fortunately, going this route is quite possible. Before you embark on such a self-driven legal journey, however, it’s important to understand what you’re up against and the best way to move forward. This will help you recognize whether a non-attorney approach is right for you — and how to go this route without stepping into legal pitfalls.
Can You File for Divorce in Texas Without an Attorney?
Going through the process of divorce is never really a simple endeavor. Even when two people agree to end their relationship amicably, there are legal issues that can complicate matters. In other instances — such as contested divorces — these issues may seem to require the help of an attorney. However, no one is required to hire a Texas divorce lawyer in order to end their marriage in the Lone Star State.
Unfortunately, this doesn’t mean that representing yourself is always a good idea. Texas law is quite complex when it comes to the dissolution of marriage. In fact, the state has systems in place to reduce the likelihood of divorce altogether. For instance, you’ll have to wait 60 days before a divorce can be finalized even if you and your former partner agree on absolutely everything.
This means you can file for divorce in Texas without an attorney, but make sure doing so is the right move.
When Is It Appropriate to File for Divorce Without a Lawyer?
A single point will be repeated throughout this guide: it’s always possible to get a divorce in Texas without an attorney, but it’s not always wise to do so. If you and your spouse cannot agree on important issues — otherwise known as a contested divorce — having an attorney on your side is vital. In the following situations, though, you may be able to avoid a trial entirely:
- There are no disputes over property division
- Both parties agree to a no-fault divorce
- There are few assets between the spouses
- Both parties are completely forthcoming and not hiding properties
- There are no children involved
In these situations, divorce without an attorney in Texas can be much simpler. However, it never hurts to first get legal advice. You need to ensure all your legal paperwork is in order and that any agreements between you and your spouse are legal. Our law firm can help make sure all your metaphorical ducks are in a row — even if you’ve decided to handle everything amicably.
The Steps for Filing for Divorce in Texas Without an Attorney
If you decide to get a divorce without an attorney in Texas, a good place to start is our state’s legal form website. This page contains many of the documents necessary to get the ball rolling. You’ll first need to start by submitting a petition for divorce and serving a copy of this petition to your spouse. They’ll need to either waive service or file an answer.
In an uncontested divorce, the only step after this is to complete a final decree of divorce. Keep in mind that this will need to be reviewed and approved by a judge, so getting legal advice prior to submission can save you time and money. And while you can file for contested divorce without a lawyer in Texas, doing so can be quite complicated. Contact our law firm today to learn how we can help.