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Texas Divorce Law

Divorce Laws in Texas

Texas divorce laws allows for a no-fault divorce. This means that you do not need to prove grounds for a divorce. However, if one party is at fault (which can include, but is not limited to, adultery, cruel treatment, and abandonment) the court may take that into consideration in determining what is an equitable division of property. Additionally, one of the spouses must have resided in Texas for a continuous 6 months and a resident of the county of filing for a continuous 90 days prior to the filing of the petition for divorce in Texas.

Alimony & Equitable Distribution in Texas

Texas is known as an equitable distribution state. According to the divorce laws in Pennsylvania this means that the marital property must be divided fairly or equitably, but not necessarily equally, between the parties regardless of title held. Marital property, also known as community property, can be defined as all property acquired during the marriage that is not separate property. However, all property is presumed to be community property until is can be proven by the evidence that is not.

Alimony, or maintenance, is awarded based on specific qualifications of the spouse. If it is deemed that the spouse does qualify for alimony, the maximum term is 3 years and the amount ordered cannot exceed 20% of the gross income of the paying spouse. However, should the length of the marriage exceed 10 years or more, and the requesting spouse can show that he or she cannot provide for minimal needs and is the custodian of a child that requires a stay at home parent, the term of maintenance can be indefinite, under Texas divorce laws.

Texas Child Support, Child Custody and Child Visitation

It is determined, according to Texas divorce law that it is in the best interest of the child that parents be appointed “joint managing conservators.” Under this idea, parents share the rights to make decisions with regard to the upbringing of the child, but the child will lives with only one parent and visit with the other. Also, one parent will have the right to determine the primary residence of the child. The other parent is allowed visitation rights in accordance with a specific visitation schedule (Standard Possession Order).

Child support (a percentage of the non-custodial parents income paid to assist with the support of his children) is determined by the “child support guidelines” as set forth by divorce law in Texas. A predetermined cap of $6000 of net earnings can be paid towards child support. Expect to pay child support until the child reaches the age of 18 or is a high school graduate, which ever occurs first.

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