If We Aren’t Married, Do We Need a Divorce Attorney?

If you’re considering dissolving your common-law or “informal” marriage in Texas, you may think formal divorce proceedings aren’t necessary. In truth, legally ending an informal marriage might actually be more complex than a divorce from a traditional marriage. Before you start looking for a San Antonio divorce firm, you should know the basics about common law marriage in Texas.

While some states presume a couple to be common law married after living together for a specified length of time, Texas does not. There are three requirements to a common law or informal marriage in Texas:

  • Both parties must agree to be married.
  • The parties must live together “as man and wife” after the agreement.
  • The couple must tell other people that they are married.

Unlike some states, whether or not the couple has children has no bearing on whether or not an informal marriage is valid. It’s also possible to get a declaration of informal marriage. This is less troublesome than going through licensing and a ceremony. It’s also more cost-effective. Ironically, a declaration of informal marriage can come in handy if you ever want to divorce. In order for Texas courts to finalize a divorce, you must first prove that your marriage existed. A declaration of informal marriage is an easy way to prove this. If you choose to go without it, consulting a San Antonio divorce firm is an important next step. You may also have to prove that both you and your spouse meet the requirements to be informally married. These include:

  • Being 18 years of age or more.
  • Not being immediately related by blood.
  • Neither spouse being already married to any other person.

A San Antonio divorce firm can help establish that you and your spouse have met the requirements to have a marriage. They can also help you achieve a fair division of assets and address any issues pertaining to your children. If you still aren’t sure whether you need to hire a divorce attorney, a free consultation may help you decide. Contact Jennifer Espronceda: 210-504-1514.

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