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Am I eligible to file for divorce in Texas?

Each state sets its own laws governing who is eligible to file for divorce.  Filing for divorce is a life-changing process and your ability to file in a certain state will ultimately impact how your assets are divided, whether you receive alimony, and how quickly the divorce will proceed.  Filing in the incorrect state or venue could result in dismissal of your case. Our Odessa divorce lawyers discuss the eligibility requirements for filing for divorce in Texas below.

You Must Be a Texas Resident

There is a common misconception among many potential divorce filers that you must divorce in the state in which you were wed.  In reality, where you wed does not control the matter. Rather, you must typically file in the county in which you reside.

To file in the state of Texas, you must meet the residency requirements.  Without residency, the court will not have jurisdiction to hear the divorce case and the case will either be rejected or dismissed.  To be considered a Texas resident, and thus be able to file in the state, you will need to establish that you have lived in the state for a period of six months preceding the divorce action and you have been a resident in the county in which you file the suit for at least 90 days.  If your spouse lives in a different state, you can still file suit in your county. Special rules exist for military families.

Texas’ Divorce Laws

Texas is a community property state, which means that property purchased or received during the marriage is generally presumed to belong to both spouses.  Texas law requires that community property be divided in accordance with what is just and right, which does not necessarily mean equal. The court will consider several relevant factors to determine how property should equitably be divided, including the length of the marriage, cause of the divorce, each spouse’s earning potential and health, the education of each spouse, the existence of children and the custody arrangement reached, and much more.

If you are unsure whether you can file for divorce in Texas due to a recent move or other factors, contact a divorce attorney for assistance.  Your divorce lawyer will review the eligibility requirements and inform you further as to Texas’ laws concerning divorce.