The process of dissolving a marriage in the legal system is intricate. While many aspects of divorce proceedings revolve around negotiations and settlements, some cases may require trial and even appeal. This summary offers insights into the rules governing these stages, helping individuals navigate the legal complexities of divorce.
1. Failure to Answer (Sec. 6.701)
In divorce proceedings, if the respondent (the person who did not file the original petition) fails to file an answer, the court won’t automatically consider the petition as admitted or confessed.
2. Waiting Period (Sec. 6.702)
After filing for divorce, a waiting period of 60 days is generally required before the court grants the divorce. However, this waiting period can be bypassed in cases involving family violence or if protective orders are in place.
3. Jury Trial (Sec. 6.703)
Either party in a divorce suit can demand a trial by jury, except in cases involving the annulment of underage marriages.
4. Testimonies (Sec. 6.704 & Sec. 6.705)
- Spouses are allowed to testify for or against each other. However, they can’t be forced to testify on matters that might incriminate them.
- Court-appointed marriage counselors are prohibited from testifying, and their records are deemed confidential.
5. Name Change (Sec. 6.706)
Upon request, the court can revert a party’s name to a previously used name during a divorce or annulment, unless specific reasons are provided against it.
6. Pending Transfers and Debts (Sec. 6.707)
Debts incurred or property transfers made during divorce proceedings with the intent to disadvantage the other spouse can be voided.
7. Costs and Attorney’s Fees (Sec. 6.708)
The court can assign costs to either party and may award reasonable attorney’s fees and expenses. In some situations, these expenses can be paid directly to the attorney.
8. Temporary Orders During Appeal (Sec. 6.709)
While an appeal is ongoing, the court can issue temporary orders to protect parties and their properties. These orders can encompass various aspects, including spousal support, property protection, and attorney’s fees.
9. Notice of Final Decree (Sec. 6.710)
Upon finalizing a divorce, the court clerk will notify the party that waived their right to process. The notice will indicate that a copy of the final decree is available at the clerk’s office.
10. Findings of Fact and Conclusions (Sec. 6.711)
Upon request, the court must provide written findings of fact and conclusions, especially regarding assets, liabilities, claims, and offsets where disputes arose.
11. Date of Marriage Requirement (Sec. 6.712)
The final decree of divorce must state the date of the marriage. This requirement doesn’t apply to certain types of marriage dissolution.
The intricacies of divorce law can be overwhelming, especially when faced with trials and appeals. This summary, while not exhaustive, provides a foundation to understand the process. For personalized advice and guidance, reach out to The Blacknall Firm.