July 3, 2020 | Share
5 Important Considerations for Spouses Contemplating Divorce During the COVID-19 Crisis
While the COVID-19 crisis has put many aspects of life on hold, it has also created an enormous amount of new stress for many families. From spending months on end in close quarters to dealing with the financial strain caused by business closures and job losses, the COVID-19 crisis has negatively impacted couples in Texas in many different ways. If you were considering a divorce before the crisis began, or if the crisis has forced you to reexamine your marriage, we encourage you to speak with one of our McKinney divorce lawyers about your situation.
If you are thinking about filing for divorce in Texas during the COVID-19 crisis, what do you need to know? Here are five important considerations:
1. The Texas Courts are Operating, But Not as Usual
The COVID-19 crisis caused unprecedented court closures, and this created a substantial backlog of divorce and other “non-essential” court proceedings. While the Collin County District Courts (which handle family law cases) have established an Operating Plan for resuming operations during the crisis, the courts’ current operations are far from business as usual. Spouses seeking to finalize their divorces should be prepared for delays, and those who need to litigate divorce-related disputes may need to wait while the courts work through their backlogged dockets.
2. Texas Has a Mandatory 60-Day Waiting Period for Finalizing a Divorce
That said, the current status of the courts should not cause spouses to delay their divorce filings. Minimally, Texas has a 60-day waiting period from the time of filing for divorce to the time that a divorce can be finalized; and, as a practical matter, most divorces take longer than 60 days anyway. By filing as soon as you are ready, you can start the clock on the 60-day waiting period, and you can get in line with the courts to make sure you are able to finalize your divorce as soon as possible.
3. Most Family Law Firms are Operating During the COVID-19 Crisis
Most family law firms, including ours, have been able to continue operating during the COVID-19 crisis. At Nordhaus & Nordhaus, PC, we are serving our clients remotely, and we are able to maintain complete confidence while communicating with our clients and sharing files by phone, videoconference and email. We can also make arrangements to meet with you in person in accordance with the CDC’s social distancing guidelines and other COVID-19 safety recommendations.
4. Ordinary Divorce Considerations Still Apply
At the end of 2019, we published an article titled, Getting Divorced in 2020: What Do Texas Residents Need to Know? While this seems like a lifetime ago, the principles we discussed still apply, and this is a good resource for spouses who are considering a divorce during the COVID-19 crisis.
5. You Should Not Try to Handle Your Divorce on Your Own
While the COVID-19 crisis has forced us to become self-sufficient in many respects, filing for divorce is not something you should try to handle on your own. Trying for a “DIY” divorce presents a host of issues, and mistakes made during the process can have a variety of long-term consequences.
Contact the McKinney Divorce Lawyers at Nordhaus & Nordhaus, PC
Are you thinking about filing for divorce? If so, we invite you to schedule a free and confidential consultation with one of our McKinney divorce lawyers. To request an appointment at your convenience, call us at 214-726-1450 or contact us online today.
Categories: Family Law & Divorce