What Are Grounds For Divorce In Houston From A Divorce Attorney?

By Cassandra Daniels | October 21, 2022

You may already have an idea of how you want to file for your divorce in Houston. But it can still be helpful to know what each situation entails and what you’ll need to move forward. 

As always, it helps to have an experienced divorce attorney to guide you through the process, and represent you on your behalf. You can save valuable time and effort avoiding a do-it-yourself divorce when you have an attorney you trust in your corner.

If you need a divorce attorney in Houston, Cassandra Daniels is your partner throughout the process.

No-Fault Versus At-Fault Grounds For Divorce In Houston

Before fully diving into each reason for divorce in Texas, you should know the difference between an “at fault” versus a “no fault” divorce. The following can fall under a no-fault divorce:

  • Insupportability or “irreconcilable differences”
  • Living separately
  • Mental institution confinement

Grounds for divorce vary from state to state, but Texas is a no-fault state. This means fault is usually only determined by a judge if there is an unequal division of assets.

At-Fault Grounds For Divorce In Houston

If you wish to file for an “at fault” divorce, you must be able to prove that your spouse did something directly to cause the end of your marriage. This particular step can be hard to do because of varying views and other disagreements – which can lengthen the process. The following four reasons fall under at-fault grounds for divorce:

  • Infidelity
  • Cruelty
  • Abandonment
  • Felony conviction

Filing an at-fault divorce can have an effect on how a judge settles your case when it comes to the division of assets, child support, child custody, and alimony. 

If you need a divorce attorney to file a divorce petition, reach out today.

7 Valid Grounds For Divorce In Harris County, Houston Texas

Are you thinking about filing a divorce decree? On average, there are about 6,646 divorces per day in the United States. If any of the following sound like reasonable grounds for your divorce, it’s time to talk to an attorney.

1. Irreconcilable Differences

A divorce without regard of fault may be granted due to, “discord or conflict of personalities that destroys the legitimate ends of the marital relationship and prevents any reasonable expectation of reconciliation.” This is a detailed way of describing a couple with many differences or disagreements that cannot be resolved.

2. Living Apart

Section 6.006. of the Texas Family Code says, “The court may grant a divorce in favor of either spouse if the spouses have lived apart without cohabitation for at least three years.”

If you have questions about living apart, you need to talk to your attorney. This is because you will run into some issues if you or your spouse have not lived in Harris county for a specified amount of time. You or your spouse must live or have lived in Harris county in the last 90 days. Otherwise, you may need to file divorce papers and continue divorce proceedings in a different state or county.

3. Confinement To A Mental Institution

If your spouse is deemed mentally incompetent and placed in a mental institution for any reason, this is a valid reason to file for divorce. Many people never consider this option because it can happen in an unexpected way, such as an accident. But there are a few stipulations that must be present. One is that your spouse must be confined for at least three years. Another is that the severity of their mental disorder is determined to be severe and incapable of improving.

4. Adultery During Marriage

People sometimes ask, “Is it illegal to cheat on my spouse in Texas or Harris county?”

No. It is not illegal to cheat on your spouse. However, it is a valid reason to file for a divorce. About 15% to 20% of married couples in the U.S. cheat. If infidelity is a reason you’re considering getting a divorce, there are a few steps you need to take.

Talk to your attorney and provide any type of proof you think is relevant to strategize. Adultery, after you file and are no longer living together, can still be used as proof. You should gather evidence whether the infidelity took place in or outside of Harris county. If you believe shared funds are being used for your spouse’s affair, you may even be able to submit a reimbursement claim for fraud. The point? Texas considers you married until your divorce is finalized. 

5. Divorce Because Of Cruelty

It’s important to keep in mind that according to the Texas Family Code Section 6.001 through 6.007, “the court may grant a divorce in favor of one spouse if the other spouse is guilty of cruel treatment toward the complaining spouse of a nature that renders further living together insupportable.” In other words, cruelty is open to interpretation as it depends on a number of varying circumstances and factors.

Potential evidence to prove cruelty may include:

  • Text messages
  • Recorded voicemails or conversations
  • Emails
  • Pictures
  • Videos
  • Police reports

Speak to your attorney to get guidance on how you should proceed with your case. 

6. Abandonment 

Section 6.005. of the Texas Family Code says a divorce may be granted in favor of one spouse if the other:

  1. Left the complaining spouse with the intention of abandonment; and


  1. Remained away for at least one year.

To clarify, abandonment means one spouse leaves with no intention of ever returning. Your spouse can leave for short periods of time, but that doesn’t count as “abandonment”. To file for divorce for this reason, your spouse’s intention must be unchanging. 

If you plan on filing due to abandonment, you should talk to an attorney who can help. 

7. Conviction Of Felony

According to the Texas Family Code Section 6.004., you may be able to file for divorce if your spouse:

  1. Has been convicted of a felony;
  2. Has been imprisoned for at least one year in the Texas Department of Criminal Justice, a federal penitentiary, or the penitentiary of another state; and
  3. Has not been pardoned.

Furthermore, “The court may not grant a divorce under this section against a spouse who was convicted on the testimony of the other spouse.”

This particular type of case should be well documented by several entities. Therefore, it will help tremendously to have a divorce attorney with this type of experience guiding you throughout the process.

Daniels Law Firm: Experience In Family Law & Divorce In Houston

Ensure your divorce is taken care of by a seasoned attorney who is familiar with family law and understands your pain points. If you have children, you will want to have sound guidance on topics such as child custody and child support. Divorce can be a stressful experience, but you do not have to go through it alone.

Talk to Daniels Law Firm in Houston.

The information in this blog post is provided for general informational purposes only, and may not reflect the current law in your jurisdiction. No information contained in this post should be construed as legal advice from Daniels Law Firm or the individual author, nor is it intended to be a substitute for legal counsel on any subject matter. No reader of this post should act or refrain from acting on the basis of any information included in, or accessible through, this post without seeking the appropriate legal or other professional advice on the particular facts and circumstances at issue from a lawyer licensed in the recipient’s state, country or other appropriate licensing jurisdiction.

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