Texas Pre-Divorce Guidance
How to Prepare for a Divorce in Texas
Whether it is mutual and amicable or contentious, a divorce can be a complex and challenging process. Filing for divorce can fill you with frustration, fear, and uncertainty. These emotions can often cloud your mind, preventing you from thinking strategically and rationally before acting.
At Goranson Bain Ausley, we can educate you on what to do before you file for divorce to help you understand the divorce process as a whole while providing a road map of what to expect along the way. Most importantly, we’ll listen with compassion, walk you through your options, and help you make informed decisions to successfully move forward after divorce.
How an Attorney Can Help You Plan for Divorce
Although advice from divorced friends and family may be comforting, the divorce process is unique to every couple. Because divorce is not a one-size-fits-all endeavor, when you’re considering a divorce, how to prepare for it should start with speaking with a skilled attorney. An experienced divorce attorney will listen to your story, answer your questions, and give you guidance on your legal rights and responsibilities. We will also educate you about preparing for a divorce as well as your options for divorce, including litigation, negotiation, mediation, Collaborative Divorce, and flat-fee divorce, and help you find the best fit for your situation.
Create a Pre-Divorce Checklist
Divorce can be stressful, and seeing the road ahead can be intimidating. However, properly preparing for the process by having a pre-divorce checklist in place can make it that much smoother.
Here are a few things to consider before filing for divorce.
Come Up with a Financial Plan
Do you and your spouse have a joint bank account? What are your monthly expenses and income? These are questions you need to ask yourself before filing for divorce. You will need to be financially independent for a minimum of 90 days after you file for divorce, so you need to save money to bridge the financial gap between when you file for divorce and when you obtain court orders for support from your spouse.
Consider Where You Will Reside
Where do you plan on living after filing for divorce? Some couples continue to reside together in their marital home after a divorce is filed, especially if they have children together. However, depending on the circumstances surrounding your divorce, this may or may not be a feasible option for you. If not, think about where you could live or stay after filing for divorce.
Take Inventory of Property
Do you have documentation of the assets you own? It’s important to have photographs of everything in your marital home before filing for divorce, especially if you plan on residing elsewhere until the divorce is finalized. It’s always a possibility that your spouse may remove, sell, or damage property during the divorce process, so collecting photographic evidence of its existence is an important part of your pre-divorce checklist.
Gather Relevant Documents
When you go through a divorce, you will need to provide your attorney with financial documents during the discovery process. These documents include tax returns, credit card statements, medical records, and more. The sooner you gather these critical documents, the easier the divorce process will be, especially if your spouse has the original documents in hand. If your spouse has the information before you do, it can be expensive and time-consuming to obtain copies. Before filing for divorce, create copies and download digital copies of all of your paperwork to an external hard drive.
How Long Do I Need to Be Separated Before I Can File for Divorce in Texas?
There is no separation requirement to file for divorce in Texas. As long as you meet residency and filing requirements, you can file for divorce at any time, whether your spouse is cooperative or not.
Work with Our Experienced Divorce Lawyers
Preparing for a divorce can be tough, but the Austin, Dallas, Fort Worth, Granbury, and Plano-based attorneys at Goranson Bain Ausley can guide you through every step of the way. Whether you’re contemplating divorce or are ready to file, a highly experienced lawyer will walk you through your options and give you all the information you need about how to prepare for a divorce in Texas. Please get in touch with us to schedule a pre-divorce guidance consultation. You can also get started online with our confidential online questionnaire.