The Woodlands Contested Divorce Attorneys
Over half of marriages in the U.S. end in divorce now and about 90% of them are classified as uncontested divorces, in which spouses agree on the terms without issue. Nearly 10% of all divorces are contested divorces that occur when spouses are simply unable to agree on settlement terms. In such a situation, you need someone on your side, making sure your interests are being represented and protected. That is why the experienced and aggressive The Woodlands area divorce attorneys at BB Law Group PLLC are here to help.
With years of experience representing divorcing parties in Woodlands, the attorneys at BB Law Group PLLC know how contentious divorces can quickly become. Our attorneys are skilled negotiators and mediators and know how to be pragmatic during a time when you may be feeling highly emotional and volatile due to the nature of your case. Knowing how to proceed with the complicated realities of divorce can be confusing. There are many decisions that must be made that will have short- and long-term consequences for your life. Having an experienced attorney from BB Law Group PLLC who can vigorously represent your interests throughout the divorce process is incredibly important so that you get what you are entitled to in the proceedings.
When you cannot agree to divorce terms with your spouse, it’s easy to become frustrated and overwhelmed with the divorce process. However, with the help of a qualified attorney, you can fight for your interests in your divorce and increase your chances of getting the terms that you want. The Woodlands contested divorce lawyers of BB Law Group PLLC are committed to helping clients fight for the divorce settlement terms that will best suit them, and you can learn more about our legal services today by calling (832) 534-2589, filling out a contact form, or by chatting with us live.
In an uncontested divorce, the parties involved generally can agree on the fact that they want to get divorced and what the terms of their divorce will be. In a contested divorce, the parties cannot agree on the fact they want to get divorced, or they cannot agree on the terms of the divorce, including things like division of assets, alimony, child custody, and child support.
Since the divorcing couple cannot agree on matters in a contested divorce, the costs of getting divorced and the time it takes to get divorced are generally greater than in an uncontested divorce. The process for a contested divorce consists of the following elements:
- The spouse seeking a divorce will file an Original Petition for Divorce with the court that specifies on what grounds they are seeking a divorce, what they are requesting from the court, and stating any temporary orders (such as restraining orders) that the court needs to address.
- The court will review the paperwork and serve the other spouse with the Petition for Divorce.
- The other spouse will have 20 days to file an answer to the original petition. The responding spouse will likely dispute any allegations made against them. Additionally, they may file a counterpetition against the spouse who originally filed the paperwork
- In the majority of counties in Texas, the court will require or strongly recommend that the parties try to mediate their dispute and come to a settlement before taking it to trial. This is especially so when it is thought that an issue will likely take more than three hours of the court’s time. The mediation will be conducted by a third-party mediator who is unaffiliated with either party.
- If the parties cannot agree on a settlement during mediation, the divorce will go to trial, which can take weeks or, in some cases, even years to conclude.
When a divorce is particularly contentious, it is critical to have an experienced divorce attorney on your side to protect your rights and help you keep what matters to you the most.
Commonly Disputed Issues
Divorces are typically different for everyone, but many issues arise again and again in contested divorces. Many spouses have difficulty agreeing over the following issues:
- Property Division: While Texas is generally a community property state—which means that all property acquired during the course of the marriage belongs to both spouses—there are some things that are considered the separate property of a married spouse. The lines between what is community property and separate property can become blurred in some instances and can have large consequences for parties when they are dividing their assets. Property division can be multi-faceted and include things like business valuations and art valuations, among other things that need to be appraised by an expert. Having an attorney who understands the intricacies and legalities of how property is defined and divided can have long-lasting implications for your divorce settlement.
- Allocation of Debt: Who is responsible for the debt acquired before and during the marriage is another point of contention between divorcing spouses, especially when the debt was acquired during the marriage and will ultimately benefit one spouse more than the other. Examples of this would include one spouse going back to school, or one spouse starting a business
- Child Custody/Visitation: Although courts in Texas strongly favor joint custody of children, in some instances that arrangement is not what is in the best interest of the child, and a court may deviate from that preference. If a spouse feels that the other parent is unfit, bringing the issue before a judge may be prudent or necessary.
- Child Support Payments: Depending on the custodial arrangement, one parent may not want to pay child support even though they are financially able and legally obligated to do so. Additionally, a parent may want to use a child as leverage in negotiating terms of a divorce settlement. When dealing with thorny elements of the contested divorce proceedings, having a lawyer can help balance the power dynamic.
- Alimony Payments: In Texas, there are two types of alimony: contractual alimony, which the parties agree upon and is unlikely in a contested divorce scenario, and court-ordered spousal maintenance. In some instances a court can make a spouse involuntarily pay spousal maintenance, allowing the receiving spouse to regain their independence. To receive court-ordered spousal maintenance, the issues must go before a judge.
- Paternity Issues: A party may try to avoid paying child support by claiming a child is not theirs. A court can help solve this problem by ordering DNA tests to determine paternity.
At BB Law Group PLLC, we recognize that going through a contested divorce can be a long and tedious process, filled with efforts of manipulation, intimidation, and overreaching. Having skilled representation from an experienced Woodlands contested divorce attorney from BB Law Group PLLC can be highly beneficial to the outcome of your case. Additionally, having an attorney to negotiate on your behalf can help alleviate some of your stresses during the contested divorce process by shielding you from the need to communicate directly with your former spouse.
Whatever issue is plaguing your divorce and making it hard to complete the process, The Woodlands divorce lawyers of BB Law Group PLLC are here to help. While our experienced attorneys are skilled in negotiating and mediation, they are also practiced litigators who can vigorously represent you during a court proceeding. Whatever your needs, our seasoned Woodlands contested divorce attorneys at BB Law Group PLLC will fight to ensure that your rights are preserved and you are awarded what you deserve. To learn more about how we can help you through your contested divorce, please give us a call at (832) 534-2589.