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Residency requirements for divorce in Texas

Deciding to end a marriage is never an easy decision and it may take months of deliberation to decide whether this is the right step. Once the decision has been made, however, many people want to quickly get through the process so they can begin moving on-similar to pulling off a band aid quickly to avoid elongating pain. However, there is one thing many people overlook yet it is, perhaps, the most essential thing to consider before filing for divorce-have you fulfilled the residency requirements to file for divorce in that particular state? This is one of the divorce legal issues that could trip some people up.

In today's day and age, people move around all the time, chasing jobs and dreams being the most common reasons people shift their lives from one state to another without another thought. However, where you live and how long you live there plays an important role in whether you can even file for divorce in that state. In Texas, either spouse must have been a resident of the state for at least six months prior to filing. In addition to this, according to Chapter 6 of the Family Code, the spouse must have also lived in the county where they are filing for at least 90 days prior to filing. What does this mean for someone who is not a resident of the state-can they not file a divorce if they have moved there after this time?

To have jurisdiction over a non-resident couple, the couple must have had their last marital residence in Texas and the suit must have been filed before the second anniversary of the date on which the marital residence ended.

Residency requirements are just some of the technicalities that must be considered before filing for divorce. An experienced lawyer may be able to guide Texas residents through the process and help them determine if they are eligible to file for divorce in the state and under what ground they should file, covered in upcoming posts.

Source: Family Law Code, "Subchapter D," Accessed on Nov. 24, 2015

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