The Texas Supreme Court has approved new do-it-yourself divorce forms this Tuesday.
The forms are designed only for uncontested divorces with no children or real estate and are intended to help low-income Texans who cannot afford legal representation.
The Court stated that it is confident the forms will be useful “in addressing the burgeoning population of litigants who cannot afford representation and are unable to obtain representation through legal service provider.”
Last year, almost 58,000 Texans filed family law cases without help from a lawyer — more than could be absorbed by attorneys offering to work without charge, the court said.
Clearly, if you are considering a divorce, and you and your spouse have property, debts, or children, you should consult with an attorney. However, if no such issues are present, and neither of spouses is contesting the divorce, the form approved by the Court might be all they need.
The form is available on the Texas Supreme Court website and in the near future will be posted on TexasLawHelp.org, a website offering legal help to low-income people.
You can find it at http://www.supreme.courts.state.tx.us/miscdocket/12/12919200.pdf. NOTE: The form might be modified in response to comments received on or before February 1, 2013.
Leiza Dolghih is a partner at Lewis Brisbois Bisgaard & Smith LLP in Dallas, Texas and a Co-Chair of the firm’s Trade Secrets and Non-Compete Disputes national practice. His practice includes commercial, intellectual property and employment litigation. You can contact her directly at Leiza.Dolghih@LewisBrisbois.com or (214) 722-7108.