Uncontested Divorce

Texas residents may choose uncontested divorce, which has numerous benefits. However, uncontested divorce is not ideal for everyone.

Texas residents who are considering a divorce can understandably feel confused, frightened and overwhelmed. They might not know which option is best to end their marriage, or even that there are different options available. Instead of being limited to courtroom litigation, many couples can choose an uncontested divorce. Uncontested options are becoming more popular, as people realize these methods have numerous advantages over traditional litigation.

Two of the most common uncontested divorce methods are mediation and collaborative law. The mediation process involves an impartial third party, the mediator, who discusses solutions to divorce disputes with each spouse. This can be a certified mediator or an attorney with mediation experience.

In a collaborative divorce, both spouses retain their own attorneys and they can consult additional professionals, such as child therapists, tax professionals and financial advisers. This uncontested option is often a good choice for those with complex asset division or child custody issues. Each party must agree not to litigate, or their attorneys must resign, which provides an additional incentive to see a collaborative divorce through.

The Advantages Of Mediation And Collaborative Law

Uncontested divorce, also known as amicable divorce, is often less costly and time-consuming than a litigated divorce. The proceedings are also private, rather than being a matter of public record, as it is with litigation. Uncontested divorce can reduce conflict, which is especially beneficial when there are children. Divorcing couples may learn valuable techniques for communicating, cooperating and compromising that they can use throughout their lives.

Cautions Regarding Uncontested Options

Uncontested divorce is not for everyone, despite the potential benefits. In the following situations, spouses may best be served by taking their disputes to court:

  • An inability to speak to each other civilly or to consider each other's opinions, suggestions and feelings

  • Domestic violence or substance abuse being present during the marriage

  • The mediator having a conflict of interest or showing preference toward one spouse

  • One spouse not wanting to get the divorce, having a financial advantage over the other or using intimidation, control and manipulation tactics

It is important to be educated on the different divorce options available, as well as to carefully consider which may be best for one's own situation. Since ending a marriage is a difficult, emotional undertaking, it may be best to speak with an experienced Texas family law attorney about whether an uncontested divorce or litigation is the best route to take.