COMPASSION. SKILL. EXPERIENCE.
Home » Divorce

Divorce Lawyer in Galveston County

Experienced Divorce Representation

When unfortunate circumstances make it clear that divorce is the only option, it’s critical to act quickly—as only a seasoned attorney can fully protect your rights. So, whether the custody of your children, your financial assets, property, or all the above are in jeopardy, Goldsberry Portz Divorce & Family Lawyers, PLLC, is poised to act now to defend your rights.

Our Board Certified Divorce Attorney

Shari Goldsberry personally handles the firm’s family law practice. She is Board Certified in Family Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization and has a track record of aggressively defending her clients’ rights in family law cases. Shari will prove herself to be an invaluable advocate in divorce proceedings, custody cases and any of the other areas of family law.

Divorce is a challenging area of practice for any attorney. While it is usually a painful and stressful process for the client, it is also a time for positive changes.

Types of Divorce

If you’re getting a divorce in Texas, it’s important to know your options. Here are two primary categories:

Contested Divorce

When spouses are unable to settle key issues like child custody, division of property, or spousal support, the result is a contested divorce. Prolonged court proceedings characterize this sort of divorce, with the judge making the final decision on the divorce settlement terms.

Uncontested Divorce

When both spouses come to a mutual agreement on all the key issues in a divorce, the process is called an uncontested divorce. Divorces go more smoothly and cost less money when this procedure is simplified. The parties to a divorce collaborate to write an agreement that will satisfy both parties before submitting it to the court for final approval. How cooperative the spouses are and how complicated their situation are two factors that determine which divorce process to pursue. Each has its own set of requirements and

img - quarreling-couple-talking-african-american-psychiatrist-office

Grounds for Divorce

You can file for a divorce in Texas based on whether one party is at fault or not. Before filing for a divorce, it is crucial to understand what the grounds for divorce are.

Fault Grounds

  • Adultery: One of the grounds for a divorce can be adultery if one partner has an affair outside of the marriage.

  • Cruelty: In extreme cases where one partner’s cruel treatment of the other makes cohabitation unbearable, the court may grant a divorce.

  • Felony Conviction: The other spouse has the right to file for a divorce if the first spouse receives a felony conviction and a minimum prison term of one year.

  • Abandonment: One partner may initiate divorce proceedings if the other refuses to return to the marital residence for a continuous period of one year.

No-Fault Grounds 

Insupportability: Irreconcilable differences, or insupportability, is the most popular reason for a divorce in Texas. The marriage has become unsustainable because of unresolved conflict or discord, resulting in the irretrievable dissolution of the marital bond.



To choose the right legal basis for dissolution, it is essential to understand the grounds for divorce. You can get advice on the best course of action for your unique case by speaking with an experienced family law attorney.

Residency Requirements

It is essential to fulfill the residency requirements of the state of Texas before submitting a divorce petition. You must meet these residency requirements for the courts in Texas to have jurisdiction over your divorce case. The case may be dismissed if these requirements are not met. Seek the advice of an experienced family law attorney if you have questions regarding your eligibility to initiate a divorce proceeding in the Lone Star State.


Minimum Residency Period
To file for a divorce in Texas, one or both spouses must have lived in the Lone Star State for a minimum of six months. All residents, whether military or civilian, are subject to this requirement.

County Residency
Divorce petitions can only be filed in counties where one spouse has lived continuously for the last three months, in addition to meeting the state residency requirement.

img - partial-view-judge-pointing-papers-client-signing-divorce-decree

The Divorce Filing Process

Divorce Petition:

Prepare a petition for dissolution of marriage and submit it to the court together with the filing fee.

Notice:

It is important to notify the spouse who is not filing for the divorce of the approaching divorce.

Response:

Within twenty days after obtaining the divorce decree, the spouse who is being served with the answer must submit it. In addition, they have the option to submit a counter-petition to the court, outlining their reasons for seeking a divorce and making any necessary requests.

Waiting Period:

At least sixty days must pass from the date of filing for a divorce for the court to consider the case. Expedited processing may be granted in exceptional cases, such as divorces resulting from domestic violence.

Mediation:

During this time, the couple can try to resolve their differences through mediation. An uncontested divorce, which gives the parties more say in the outcome, is the result of successful mediation.

Hearing:

When divorcing spouses are unable to reach an agreement, the matter becomes contested and is ultimately decided by a judge. One or more judges or juries may preside over the hearing. If the deal is approved by the judge, the matter will be closed.

Divorce Decree:

Both spouses must sign the divorce decree before it can be submitted to the court following the judge's ruling.

img - large-classic-american-house-with-three-car-garage

Dividing Property During a Divorce in Texas

The law states that your property must be divided in a manner that is just and right. However, we recognize that the value of the property to be divided is only part of the equation. It may be much more important to you to keep the home and all the equity than other, equally valuable portions of your estate.
 
Our firm makes it a priority to consider the clients’ particular interests and keep in mind their special facts and circumstances.
 
Important information regarding the division of assets and liabilities is as follows:

Community Property

  • Most assets amassed by either spouse throughout a marriage in Texas are considered community property and are therefore equally divisible in the event of a divorce.
  • Earnings, real estate, retirement benefits, and debts accrued during a marriage are all considered community property.

Separate Property

  • Separate property, which does not include assets inherited by one spouse or assets owned by one spouse prior to marriage, is not divisible in the event of a divorce.
  • Nevertheless, when individual assets are mixed with communal assets, they become divisible. To establish the unique character of specific assets, tracing might be required.

Equitable Distribution

  • Although a 50/50 split of community property is presumed by Texas law, the court may decide otherwise if it finds that such a division would be unfair or unjust.
  • The property division may be impacted by factors like the duration of the marriage, the earning capacity of each spouse, their contributions to the marriage, and the needs of any children.

Marital Agreements

  • Property division agreements can also be reached amicably by spouses through mediation or negotiation. The court is likely to uphold a marital agreement regarding the distribution of assets and debts if the parties involved are in agreement.

The state of Texas adheres to community property laws when deciding how to divide assets in a divorce. Community property rules and certain circumstances, such as the length of the marriage, the ages of the spouses, and their income, are considered by the court when dividing assets and obligations.

img - father-checking-bicycle-of-little-daughter

Child Custody and Support

Among the most important aspects of a child-related Texas divorce is the determination of child support and custody.

Types of Custody

Among the most important aspects of a child-related Texas divorce is the determination of child support and custody.

Legal Custody

This includes the authority to decide on the child's religious, medical, and educational practices as well as other major life decisions. Most Texas courts prefer joint legal custody arrangements, in which the parents have equal say in major life decisions.

Physical Custody

Where the child will reside and how often the non-custodial parent can visit are both decided upon by this. A child's best interests and the parents' financial situation should be considered when deciding on a physical custody arrangement.

Determining Child Custody

When it comes to deciding on a custody arrangement, the courts in Texas put the child’s best interests first. Considerations include the quality of the child’s relationships with both parents, the financial stability of the parents, and, if applicable, the child’s expressed preferences.

Child Support

The non-custodial parent usually pays child support to the custodial parent so that the child can have basic necessities like food, clothes, a roof over their head, and medical treatment.
Child support payments in Texas are determined according to state guidelines, which consider the income of the non-custodial parent and the number of children who need support. Healthcare and childcare costs are two more potential considerations.

Modification and Enforcement

Significant changes in circumstances, like a parent’s move or a change in financial status, can necessitate a modification of child support and custody orders. Wage garnishment, driver’s license suspension, and contempt of court charges are some enforcement actions that can occur when child support or custody orders are not complied with.

img - family-figure-and-gavel-on-table-family-law

Alimony or Spousal Support

When one spouse pays financial support to the other during or after a divorce, this is called alimony or spousal support. The following is a rundown of the Texas alimony process.

Eligibility

  • If one of the following conditions is met and the requesting spouse does not have enough money or assets to cover their basic needs, the court in Texas may decide to pay spousal support:
  • If the recipient spouse has a mental or physical disability, they will not be able to work and provide for their basic necessities.
  • The recipient spouse has been married for a minimum of ten years, but they are unable to work to provide for their basic necessities.
  • Within two years of the filing for divorce or while the divorce is pending, the paying spouse had a domestic violence conviction against the other spouse or their child.

Factors Considered

  • The financial resources and earning capacity of each spouse are among the factors that Texas courts consider when deciding on the amount and length of spousal support.
  • Two people's educational backgrounds and work experience.
  • Longevity of the matrimony.
  • Each partner's age, physical health, and mental state.
  • Contributions made by one partner to the other's capacity to further their education, acquire new skills, or earn more money.
  • Any kind of marital infidelity, including cruelty or adultery.

Duration and Modification

  • Depending on the specifics of each case, a Texas court may issue a permanent or temporary spousal support order. The divorce process may result in a temporary support order, and the finalization of the divorce may lead to a permanent support order.
  • If there has been a substantial change in circumstances, like a change in the financial or health status of either spouse, the spousal support order can be modified.

It is important to consider the financial situation of each spouse when deciding on alimony or spousal support during a divorce. To learn more about your options and rights in a Texas spousal support case, contact an experienced family law attorney.

Contact Us for Help
Fields marked with an * are required
Disclaimer: The use of the internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.

Contact Us Today

Call Goldsberry Portz Divorce & Family Lawyers, PLLC, today at 281-485-3500 or complete our contact form to schedule a consultation. With offices in Texas City and Pearland, we serve clients throughout the Houston area.

How it Works

The process for hiring Goldsberry Portz Divorce & Family Lawyers, PLLC begins with an in-depth consultation to discuss your specific legal needs and circumstances. During this consultation, our experienced attorneys will listen to your concerns, gather relevant information about your case, and provide you with tailored advice on how we can assist you.

Following the consultation and once you’ve decided to move forward with our firm, the next step is signing the contract. The contract will outline the terms of our representation, including the scope of services, legal fees, and any other relevant agreements. Our team will ensure that you fully understand the terms of the contract before signing and will be available to address any questions or concerns you may have.

Once the contract is signed, the final step in the hiring process is remitting payment of the retainer fee. The retainer fee is an upfront payment that secures our legal services and allows us to begin working on your case. This fee is typically based on the complexity of your case and the anticipated work involved.

Once these steps are completed, our team will officially begin representing you and advocating for your interests. Throughout the process, we are committed to providing you with personalized attention, effective communication, and zealous representation to help you achieve the best possible outcome in your family law matter.

During your initial consultation appointment with our family law firm, you can expect a comprehensive and personalized approach to understanding your situation and legal needs. We’ll start by discussing the details of your case, including your specific circumstances regarding divorce, child custody, child support, enforcement issues, or adoption.
 
We’ll provide you with an overview of the legal process relevant to your case, outlining the steps involved, potential challenges, and options available to you. This will give you a clear understanding of what to expect as we navigate through your legal matter together.
 
Additionally, we’ll discuss the anticipated timeline for your case, including key milestones and potential factors that could affect the duration of the process. Understanding the timeline can help manage expectations and provide you with a sense of control throughout the proceedings.
 
During the consultation, we encourage you to ask any questions you may have about your case or the legal process. We’re here to address your concerns and provide guidance every step of the way.
 
Overall, our goal during the initial consultation is to provide you with a thorough understanding of your legal options, the process ahead, and how we can assist you in achieving your desired outcome.

At Goldsberry Law, we prioritize timely and personalized attention to each client’s case. We understand that time is of the essence when dealing with legal matters. Typically, we aim to schedule in-depth consultations within one to two weeks of your initial contact with our law firm.
 
However, if your case requires urgent attention due to imminent hearings or time-sensitive issues, our attorneys will make every effort to accommodate your needs. We recognize the importance of addressing urgent matters promptly, and we will do our best to schedule an appointment before any upcoming hearings or deadlines.
 
In the rare instance that we are unable to schedule a consultation within your desired timeframe, we will refer you to a trusted attorney who may be able to see you sooner. Our priority is to ensure that you receive the legal assistance you need as quickly as possible, while also providing the highest level of service tailored to your specific case.

To schedule an appointment for an in-depth consultation with one of our attorneys at Goldsberry Law, you have a couple of convenient options. You can contact our law firm directly at 281-485-3500 and speak with one of our Client Relations Specialists. They will assist you in finding a suitable time for your consultation.
 
Alternatively, you can schedule a conference call with our Client Relations Manager by visiting our online scheduling page at https://goldsberrylaw.as.me/schedule.php. This allows you to select a time that works best for you without having to make a phone call.
 
Whichever method you choose, we are dedicated to making the appointment scheduling process as easy and efficient as possible, ensuring that you receive the legal assistance you need in a timely manner.

At Goldsberry Law, we prioritize transparency regarding our rates. Our in-depth consultation fee is $75.00 for telephone or Zoom appointments and $250.00 for in-person consultations.
 
For ongoing legal representation, we provide tailored financial arrangements based on various factors such as the attorney chosen and the complexity of your legal matters.
 
Similarly, our attorneys’ rates vary, reflecting their respective experience and qualifications.
 
We understand the significance of financial considerations, and during your consultation, we’ll discuss payment options and work together to develop a suitable strategy.
 
Additionally, we offer convenient payment methods including Visa, MasterCard, American Express, Discover, and eChecks, ensuring accessibility and ease of payment for our clients. If you have any questions or require assistance with payment arrangements, please reach out to us. We’re dedicated to ensuring a seamless and efficient experience with our firm.

At Goldsberry Law, we understand the importance of having a strong attorney-client relationship. During your initial call with one of our Client Relations Specialists, you will have the opportunity to discuss your preferences regarding legal representation. If you have a specific attorney in mind or if there are certain qualities you’re looking for in an attorney, we will do our best to accommodate your preferences.
 
If you do not have a particular attorney in mind, our Client Relations Specialists will gather information about the overall issues presented in your circumstances. Based on this information and your preferences, they will provide a recommendation for an attorney who is best suited to handle your case.
 
We believe in the importance of matching clients with attorneys who have the relevant skills and experience to effectively address their legal needs. Rest assured that whether you choose your own attorney or rely on our recommendation, we are committed to providing you with high-quality legal representation tailored to your specific case.