McKinney Divorce Attorney

McKinney Divorce Lawyer

Serving Collin County, TX, with Competence & Compassion

Divorce can be a highly stressful and emotional process. During a divorce, you are forced to confront, discuss, and resolve a variety of issues. These decisions must be made while you are suffering feelings of loss, confusion, and uncertainty.

Know that you do not have to make divorce decisions alone. Let the experienced legal team at The Law Offices of Lisa G. Garza, P.C. guide you through the Texas divorce process.

Why Choose the McKinney Divorce Lawyers at The Law Offices of Lisa G. Garza, P.C.?

At the Law Offices of Lisa G. Garza, P.C., we understand the complexities of divorce and the impact a divorce can have on those involved. Attorney Lisa Garza has more than 25 years of experience helping clients navigate divorce in Texas and its related issues.

Lisa Garza is Board Certified in Family Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization. The Law Offices of Lisa G. Garza, P.C., focuses only on family law and is driven to provide personalized service to every client we represent.

Learn more about divorce in McKinney by scheduling your confidential consultation by phone or online today.

How an Experienced McKinney Family Law Attorney Can Help

As a divorcing spouse, you are not required to retain a family law attorney. However, you are best served by seeking the advice of a competent family law attorney like those at the Law Offices of Lisa G. Garza, P.C.

Our firm can provide the understanding you need at every stage of the divorce process so you can make intelligent decisions about how to move forward in ways that will benefit you and your family. We know the stakes can be high, and we will work relentlessly to ensure that your legal rights, your best interests, and your future are protected and pursued.

You may be tempted to handle your divorce on your own without the advice and guidance of an attorney. While this may be beneficial for those with few assets, no property or children, and a short-term marriage, it can be a massive mistake for others. Doing so could end up costing you more than if you had competent legal representation.

Common mistakes can include failing to fairly resolve matters involving debt, having assets valued under or over their true worth, and failing to understand the ramifications of other decisions.

When you choose to bring in an attorney experienced in all of the details and complexities of Texas divorce, you will be protected from making inadvertent and often expensive mistakes. You will also have the voice you need to ensure that your best interests are forcefully pursued when issues arise that you may not have anticipated. At our firm, you will be adequately prepared for all contingencies and will have the protection of a Family Law Specialist behind you throughout the legal process.

Call or schedule a divorce consultation online now with the Law Offices of Lisa G. Garza, P.C.

Who Can Divorce in Texas?

You can get a divorce in Texas if you or your spouse has lived in the state for at least the last six months. You or your spouse must live in the county where the divorce is filed for at least 90 days before filing for divorce.

Is Texas a No-Fault Divorce State?

Texas is a no-fault divorce state. In a no-fault divorce state, spouses may divorce one another without citing fault or blame for the breakup of the marriage. Instead, the filing spouse may cite “irreconcilable differences” or “insupportability” of the marriage as grounds for a divorce.

The court does not consider fault when dividing property or assets in a no-fault divorce.

Are There Fault-Based Grounds for Divorce in Texas?

There are fault-based grounds for divorce in Texas. While citing fault may be advantageous in a property division to a wronged spouse, fault-based grounds must be proven.

Proving fault adds time and expense to a divorce case. It can also increase the emotional burden of a divorce.

The fault-based grounds for divorce in Texas are:

  • Cruelty
  • Felony conviction and imprisonment of a year or more
  • Abandonment
  • Mental confinement of a minimum of three years
  • Living apart for three or more consecutive years
  • Adultery

Fault can significantly impact the division of marital property. For example, when one spouse uses marital assets to further an extra-marital affair, that spouse may be forced to reimburse the innocent spouse for “wasted community assets.”

What is an Uncontested Divorce in Texas?

While not formally recognized, an uncontested divorce in Texas is one in which the spouses agree on every divorce issue. Spouses who need court intervention to resolve even one minor dispute have a contested divorce.

In Texas, most divorces are contested.

What is the Divorce Process in Texas?

Divorces follow a basic process and timeline in Texas. The divorce process begins with one spouse filing the divorce forms and serving these forms on the other spouse.

The spouse who files the divorce is called the Petitioner. The spouse receiving the divorce papers is the Respondent.

There is a 60-day waiting period for a divorce in Texas. It begins on the day after the Petitioner files the divorce documents. There are exceptions to the 60-day waiting period in cases of family violence.

Spouses who can reach an agreement within the first 60 days of their divorce may prepare and sign documents for entry and filing upon the expiration of the waiting period. Spouses may also progress through the divorce process as follows:

  • After service of the Petition for Divorce, the Respondent has 20 days from the service date to file an answer to the Petition for Divorce. The Respondent may also choose to file a Counter-Petition for Divorce in which they cite grounds for divorce and make any separate requests from the court;
  • Once the Respondent has the opportunity to enter the divorce case, there is a temporary order hearing before the court or a temporary order agreement between the spouses. Temporary orders contain provisions for children, the marital home, marital property, spousal maintenance, and more for the time leading up to the final divorce decree;
  • Temporary orders and a final case resolution may be reached through negotiations, mediation, collaborative divorce, or courtroom litigation. The type of dispute resolution spouses use depends on the complexity of their divorce case and their circumstances;
  • Spouses who cannot cooperate or are unwilling to exchange asset and debt information must undergo the discovery process. During discovery, formal requests for information and production of documents are sent to both parties. These requests must be answered under oath;
  • Highly contested divorce cases may require depositions. In a deposition, an attorney questions a witness under oath, and a court reporter is used to record the proceedings;
  • The discovery process often leads to negotiations and a divorce settlement. Very few divorce cases proceed to trial;
  • Divorce trials can extend a case by months or more. Divorce trials may require the testimony of expert witnesses like psychologists, forensic accountants, and child care experts. Along with time spent, expert witnesses can drastically increase the expense of a trial; and
  • Once a trial ends, there is a time in which the ruling may be appealed. Appeals are rare and they are costly and time-consuming to defend.

Whenever possible, it benefits spouses to compromise on a divorce settlement. If it is impossible or impractical to compromise on every significant matter, it is wise to agree on as many issues as possible.

What Issues Must be Resolved to Divorce in Texas?

In a Texas divorce, you will need to resolve the following issues before the court can finalize your divorce. These may be resolved between you and your spouse outside of court on your own, through negotiation with the help of your attorneys, through mediation, or in court before a judge.

These issues include:

  • The division of marital property: Texas is a community state in which all marital property is considered to be owned equally by both spouses and must be divided on an equal basis as much as possible.
  • Child custody and visitation: Texas refers to this issue as “conservatorship.” This gives parents legal rights and responsibilities that may be shared or granted to one parent only.
  • Child support: Texas requires parents to support their children financially. This generally translates to the parent who has primary access to the child receiving payments from the other parent.
  • Spousal maintenance: This financial support may or may not be awarded to a spouse in a divorce. It can be sought and/or contested in divorce hearings.

You can learn more about any of these issues and their impact on your divorce by speaking with an experienced McKinney family law attorney.

Contact an Experienced McKinney Divorce Attorney Today

At the Law Offices of Lisa G. Garza, P.C., we believe in empowering our clients to make decisions that will serve them well into the future. Our legal team is compassionate and empathetic. We understand how divorce affects all aspects of your life.

Attorney Lisa Garza is a McKinney family law attorney well-versed in negotiations, mediation, and trial practice. It is vital to Attorney Garza and her team that the method in which your divorce is resolved is personalized to you and your situation.

Let us work with you through this difficult time. The Law Offices of Lisa G. Garza, P.C., will aggressively represent your interests so you can focus on your well-being.

Call or contact the Law Offices of Lisa G. Garza, P.C., online now to schedule your confidential consultation.