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Laura Dale & Associates, P.C.

What can you do when your spouse refuses to sign divorce papers?

If you are among the many people across Texas who are heading toward divorce, you probably have a lot on your plate. Even the least-acrimonious divorces can prove difficult, time-consuming and emotionally taxing, but divorce can prove to be even more so if you are the only person in your marriage who wants it. So, what can you do if you served your spouse with divorce papers, but he or she refuses to acknowledge or sign them?

Per, a divorce that only one of the two parties in a marriage wants becomes a “contested divorce.” While contested divorces can prove troublesome, requiring you to jump over some additional legal hurdles, the good news is that your spouse’s desire, alone, is not enough to keep your marriage together. If your spouse refuses to sign your divorce papers, one of the first steps you should take is to find out why. Is there something you can do, or something you can agree to, that might make your husband or wife more likely to sign your divorce papers?

If you do not have any luck with this approach, your next step might involve filing a petition with your local family court. After that, you will likely have to perform a little due diligence, which might involve supplying documentation about shared assets, among other aspects of your marriage, to the court. Next, you and your spouse will typically have a chance to present your cases, which gives you an opportunity to raise issues such as child custody, child support, visitation and so on. After both of you present your cases, the court will issue its judgment relating to your divorce.

While this information about contested divorce is educational in nature, please note that it is not a substitute for legal advice.

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