How to File a Divorce in Texas Without a Lawyer

How to File a Divorce in Texas Without a Lawyer

Divorce is a difficult and emotional process, but it can become even more complicated when you add the expenses of hiring a lawyer. Fortunately, in Texas, you have the option to file for divorce without legal representation. This article will guide you through the steps to file a divorce in Texas without a lawyer, and provide answers to commonly asked questions.

1. Determine if you are eligible for a divorce in Texas:
To file for a divorce in Texas, one of the parties must have been a resident of the state for at least six months prior to filing, and a resident of the county where the divorce is filed for at least 90 days.

2. Prepare the necessary forms:
Visit the website of the Texas State Law Library or the Texas Supreme Court’s website to find the required divorce forms. Fill them out completely and accurately. The forms typically include a Petition for Divorce, Waiver of Service, and Final Decree of Divorce.

3. File the forms with the district clerk:
Take the completed forms to the district clerk’s office in the county where you or your spouse reside. Pay the filing fee, which may vary by county. If you cannot afford the fee, you may be eligible to have it waived by filing an Affidavit of Inability to Pay.

4. Serve your spouse with the divorce papers:
If your spouse is cooperative, you can ask them to sign a Waiver of Service, acknowledging receipt of the divorce papers. If not, you will need to arrange for them to be served with the papers by a process server or constable. It is important to follow the correct legal procedures for service.

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5. Attend a court hearing:
After filing the necessary documents and serving your spouse, you may need to attend a court hearing. The court will review your case, ensure all requirements have been met, and finalize the divorce. Be prepared to present any evidence or documentation required by the court.

6. Follow the court’s instructions:
Once the court has granted your divorce, carefully read and follow the instructions provided by the court. These instructions will guide you through the final steps, such as dividing property and debts, determining child custody and support, and finalizing any other necessary legal matters.


Q: Can I file for divorce in Texas if I have children?
A: Yes, you can file for divorce in Texas even if you have children. However, it is important to address issues such as child custody and support during the divorce proceedings.

Q: Can I change my name during the divorce process?
A: Yes, you can request a name change as part of your divorce. You will need to include this request in your divorce petition and provide a valid reason for the change.

Q: How long does the divorce process take in Texas?
A: The duration of the divorce process in Texas can vary depending on the complexity of the case and the court’s schedule. On average, it can take anywhere from a few months to over a year to finalize a divorce.

Q: Can I get a divorce if my spouse does not agree?
A: Yes, you can still obtain a divorce in Texas if your spouse does not agree to it. However, it may lengthen the process and require additional steps, such as serving them with divorce papers through a process server.

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Q: Can I modify the divorce agreement later?
A: In some cases, you may be able to modify certain aspects of the divorce decree, such as child custody or support, if there are significant changes in circumstances. It is advisable to consult an attorney if you wish to modify your divorce agreement.

Filing for divorce without a lawyer in Texas is a viable option for those who want to save money and are comfortable navigating the legal process themselves. However, it is important to note that divorce laws can be complex, and legal advice may be necessary in certain situations. If you have any doubts or concerns, it is always wise to consult with an experienced family law attorney to ensure your rights are protected throughout the divorce process.