What Does it Mean to be "Separated?" - The Houston Family Law Blog

The Houston Family Law Blog

What Does it Mean to be "Separated?"

The term separation can be a tricky concept when it comes to Texas family law. This is because the state of Texas does not actually recognize the legal concept of separation, according to Divorcenet.com In the Lone Star state, a person is married until a court enters a final divorce decree.

Nevertheless, Texas couples may find it best to consider informally separating before getting a divorce. Some spouses may want to do everything possible to avoid a divorce; whether it be for religious, financial, or personal reasons. Spouses in Texas can enter a "separation agreement" and there are even Houston family attorneys in the area that can help specifically draft separation agreements.

FindLaw reports that a separation agreement establishes rules for assets and liabilities, maintenance, custody or visitation issues. The agreement is often the result of much discussion and negotiation between the two parties involved. The divorce process in Texas can also be complicated, since the state court has the power to decide over all divorce proceedings.

Divorcenet.com states that in order to get a divorce in Texas, a person does not need to show fault; although it can at times be a factor among court decisions. The spouses who are filing for a divorce must wait 60 days after the date that the divorce petition was filed, in order for the divorce to be finalized. However, it's important to be patient when it comes to divorce proceedings because courts may drag out certain cases for long periods of time. Sometimes, a trial separation could be all you need.

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