If you or your spouse is considering divorce and you live separately, time is of the essence.
The location of the divorce proceedings can greatly affect the process and outcome of your divorce. If your spouse files for a divorce in a county or state different from where you reside, you can be at a geographic disadvantage. If the distance is great enough, you might need to hire an out-of-state attorney and travel to hearings, depositions, mediations and the final trial.
Also, location is important on substantive issues in a divorce. States differ with regards to their laws affecting formulas for alimony and child support and the division of property. Also, states have different laws affecting child custody, so your relationship with your children may not only be affected by the distance they live from you but also by the legal access granted to you under the laws of different states.
It is a misnomer that you need to file for divorce in the state where you were married. In order for a Texas court to obtain jurisdiction over your marriage, one spouse needs to have domiciled, that is have made their permanent home in Texas for at least 6-months and actually resided in the county in which the divorce is filed for at least 90-days.
Even if you and your spouse both live in Texas, but in different counties, it is important to be the first to file, so that you get to choose the county that best represents your interests. Texas counties have different local rules that can affect the expediency and expense of your divorce.
Again, if you or your spouse is considering divorce and you live separately, call us as soon as possible, so we can set up a time to review these and other potential considerations.