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When Does a Texas Divorce Go to Trial? 

Posted on in Divorce

b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_1324425602-min.jpgSeveral decades ago, the classic impression of a divorce case involved two angry spouses, duking out their differences in court. Divorces could drag on for months or years before finally getting resolved, and the needs of any children were often subject to the conflict of the parents. 

After significant research showed that both adults and children are better off trying to resolve their differences with the help of alternative dispute resolution strategies like mediation, Texas courts now encourage couples to work out their differences together - before even filing for divorce, if possible. However, this is not possible in every circumstance and trying to resolve issues outside of court may even be dangerous for some people. If you are considering divorce and are wondering whether your case is likely to go to trial, read on and then contact a Texas divorce attorney who can help. 

Issues That Drive Divorces Towards Courtroom Litigation

Perhaps unsurprisingly, spouses who experience extreme levels of conflict or abuse are the most likely to require a judge to resolve their issues. Common problems that require a judge to hear both spouses’ arguments and make decisions on their behalf include: 

  • Domestic violence

  • Child abuse or neglect

  • Hidden assets

  • A missing or uncooperative spouse

Jury Trials and Texas Divorce

The most uncommon method of resolving divorce issues in Texas is by a jury trial. If one spouse does not trust a judge’s motives, judgment, or ability to be unbiased, that spouse may request a jury trial to decide on certain issues. Juries are only available in rare circumstances and cannot be used for so many issues that they are rarely useful for resolving divorce disputes.

A jury may hear cases involving the enforceability of a prenuptial agreement, fraud in a marriage, how much spouses may be ordered to reasonably pay in attorneys’ fees, and other cases involving a dispute of material facts. Texas is the only state that allows juries to decide such issues, and jury trials in divorces are becoming more and more unusual. 

Contact a Fort Worth, TX Divorce Lawyer

Not all divorces require courtroom litigation, but if yours does, you will want legal advocacy from an experienced team of assertive Fort Worth divorce attorneys with Hatton & Hatton, PLLC. Whether you prefer to resolve your differences with mediation or need to petition a court to manage issues like child custody and alimony, our goal is to make sure you get the best deal out of your divorce decree. Call us today at 817-349-8120 to schedule a free, confidential consultation. 



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