Uncontested Divorce in Texas
How to Define an Uncontested Divorce
If you find the prospect of a divorce intimidating, you're not alone. For many people, dissolving a marriage is one of the most daunting and stressful experiences they'll ever have. Nobody enters a marriage expecting it to end in divorce, and parting ways with someone you love is never easy.
At Agreed Divorces, we help clients dissolve their marriages with dignity, grace, and respect. Not every divorce has to be a bitter, draining courtroom battle. In an uncontested divorce, the parties agree on how to proceed with various divorce-related processes. Our unique six-step method and flat-fee pricing model enables us to give our clients a better path forward, streamlining the divorce and reducing the stress of the process.
What Is an Uncontested Divorce?
In an uncontested divorce, spouses completely agree on how to dissolve their marriage and resolve various divorce-related processes such as child support and custody, alimony, property division, etc.
If you and your partner disagree on any aspect of the divorce, then your divorce is technically contested.
It's a common misconception that contested divorces always result in exhausting, stressful legal battles that end in a lose-lose judgment handed down by the court. Even if your divorce is contested at the outset, alternative dispute resolution (ADR) methods such as mediation or collaborative divorce can help you and your spouse negotiate an arrangement and resolve your divorce peacefully. To learn more about these alternative options, you can visit our Mediation and Collaborative Divorce pages.
While an uncontested divorce isn't always possible, spouses should aim for an uncontested divorce whenever possible.
In Texas, the average cost of a conventional, in-court divorce comes out to $23,500 if children are involved, or $15,600 without kids. In contrast, our standard Agreed Divorce (uncontested divorce) package here at Agreed Divorces is just $1,500-2,500. In addition to being dramatically more cost-effective than a contested divorce, uncontested divorce has a slew of other benefits, which we'll get into briefly. First, let's cover the requirements to file for an uncontested divorce in Texas.
You can file for a divorce in Texas if:
- You or your spouse have lived here for at least six months;
- You or your spouse have lived in the county where you're filing for at least three months;
- You and your spouse agree on all aspects of the divorce process.
Texas is an at-fault state for divorce, meaning the grounds on which you file for divorce can impact your case. You can cite the following reasons as grounds for your divorce in Texas:
- Insupportability. This is considered the default "no-fault" ground and is also commonly known as "irreconcilable differences."Essentially, it just means that you can't overcome disagreements or differences in your marriage.
- Cruelty. If your spouse engages in cruel acts such as domestic abuse or neglect, you can cite cruelty as grounds for divorce. Divorces based on the grounds of cruelty are almost always contested, since having the court present can protect the alleged victim from the alleged abuser more thoroughly.
- Adultery. You can initiate divorce if your spouse cheats on you.
- Felony conviction. If your spouse is convicted of a felony and handed a one-year (or longer) prison sentence, you can file for divorce.
- Confinement in a mental hospital. If your spouse becomes mentally incapacitated or is confined to a state or private mental hospital for three or more years, and shows no signs of improvement, it can be grounds for a divorce.
- Living apart. If you live apart from your spouse for at least three years, you can file for divorce.
- Abandonment. If your spouse abandons you for at least a year and has no intention of returning, you can use that as grounds for a divorce.
What Are the Benefits of an Uncontested Divorce?
An uncontested divorce can turn the dissolution of your marriage into a positive experience, enabling you to build a better, healthier life post-divorce. Some of the benefits of uncontested divorce include:
- It's more cost-effective. We already went over the drastic price difference between an uncontested and contested divorce (especially if you pursue an Agreed Divorce with our firm), but it's worth re-emphasizing. For many people, legal fees are a major concern going into the divorce process. An uncontested divorce can lighten the load.
- It's less stressful. By definition, an uncontested divorce can only occur if the parties agree on all aspects of the divorce and want to focus on moving forward towards a healthier life post-divorce. This makes an uncontested divorce inherently less stressful than a contested divorce, which tends to be rooted in conflict.
- It's easier on the children. For any child, divorce is a life-changing experience. If the parents agree on terms for the divorce and remain friendly, children are less likely to be traumatized by the process. Since uncontested divorces are typically amicable, they also lay the foundation for healthier co-parenting arrangements moving forward. Additionally, parents in an uncontested divorce must agree on how to take care of child custody and support, reducing conflict during custody negotiations. To learn more about how our team helps parents navigate the custody process, visit our What We Do page.
- It's faster (and more confidential). Since uncontested divorces don't involve court battles or often require any court representation (other than to finalize the divorce decree), the process is faster. You won't have to deal with scheduling court dates or paying your attorney to appear in court on your behalf. Additionally, in a contested, in-court divorce, the case is made a matter of public record. If bad actors go digging around in your divorce case file, they might find potentially embarrassing information and make it public. While your negotiation statements will be filed with the local court in an uncontested divorce, not all the details are made a matter of public record like in a contested divorce.
- It's easier to facilitate a mutually beneficial arrangement between the parties. Contested divorce often ends with the court judge issuing a final judgment and divorce decree. These decrees often result in lose-lose compromises that leave all the involved parties feeling frustrated and bitter. In contrast, since you and your spouse must agree on all divorce-related matters in an uncontested divorce, you can come to a mutually beneficial arrangement with one another. Why leave your future up to a judge who doesn't know you and may not fully understand your case, when you can take it into your own hands?
Agreed Divorces: The Divorce Process You Deserve
At Agreed Divorces, we use a unique six-step process and flat-fee pricing to streamline the Agreed (uncontested) Divorce process, enabling our clients to dissolve their divorces with respect, dignity, and grace. To learn more about our methodology, please visit our Process page. In the meantime, here's a brief summary of the six steps we take:
- Receive a free consultation with board-certified family lawyer James "Jimmy" W. Evans. Mr. Evans will sit down with you to discuss your case and determine the best path forward for your divorce.
- Let us file your divorce petition. We use a modified divorce petition that removes any obtuse or intimidating language so that both parties understand the divorce process more clearly.
- Fill out our online questionnaire with your spouse. In Texas, couples must wait 60 days after filing for divorce to finalize the dissolution of their marriage. In the interim, we'll have you and your partner fill out our online questionnaire. The questionnaire helps us pursue your best interests, bringing us to our next step.
- We'll draft and revise an Agreed Final Decree of Divorce that both parties find mutually beneficial. The decree sets forth all the terms of the divorce. Once the draft is finished, we'll work with you to answer any questions or concerns and make revisions until you're satisfied with the decree.
- Work with Mr. Evans to finalize and sign the decree. Once we're done making revisions, Mr. Evans will personally look over the decree to ensure that it's legally sound and you're satisfied. Then, we'll work with you and your partner to help both parties sign the decree.
- Finalize the divorce. Finally, we'll present the decree to the court and start finalizing the divorce. As part of the process, you'll have to appear in court and give some basic testimony, known as a "prove-up." We'll work with you to ensure you're prepared for the prove-up. Once the prove-up is finished, the court will finalize your divorce, and we'll complete any remaining steps, such as sending both parties a copy of the final decree or finalizing child support arrangements.
Our six-step process isn't the only thing we do to make divorce easier for our clients. We also use a flat-fee pricing model for our standard Agreed Divorce package, so you know up-front exactly how much our services will cost—never worry about hidden fees or consultation costs again. We want to give back to our community by making our services as transparent as possible, and the flat-fee pricing model allows us to achieve that goal while making divorce more affordable for our clients.
At Agreed Divorces, we will help you find the best path forward for your divorce. You deserve attorneys who will handle your case with care and compassion—why settle for less?
- Fixed Pricing Starting at $2,500*
- Board Certified in Family Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization
- Avoid Costly Litigation Expenses
- Achieve a Desired Outcome with Minimal Conflict
- Decades of Legal Experience
- Team Oriented and Collaborative Law Firm
- Attorney James Evans
Request Your Free Consultation
File Your Petition With the Court
Work Out the Details of Your Divorce
Draft Your Initial Divorce Decree
Review & Sign Final Documents
Finalize Your Agreed Divorce