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THE DIVORCE PROCESS IN TEXAS

If you’re not familiar with the process, feel free to read through our guide to the Divorce Process. This document will get you familiar with what it takes and what you need to do to finalize this chapter and start a new one.

Many of our clients qualify for an uncontested divorce that we offer flat rate plans, pay as you go plans and payment plans to accommodate your specific needs. If you have any questions about the process and about how we can help just let us know.



Why Hire Us?

Julie Johnson and Robin Rubrecht Zegen are some of the most experienced Dallas Family Law attorneys focusing on creating a new beginning from the often painful divorce process. With an extensive knowledge in Family Law and specifically the divorce process, Julie and Robin work hard to represent their clients and put their needs first.

The firm is a boutique-sized law firm committed to providing solutions tailored to your unique set of circumstances and focused on treating customers as clients not simply another case number. We understand that this time in your life is very emotional and we take seriously our commitment to help you through the process as quickly and painlessly as possible. Learn more about the family law services we provide.

If you are not familiar with the process, feel free to read through our guide to the Divorce Process. This document will get you familiar with what it takes and what you need to do to finalize this chapter and start a new one. Many of our clients qualify for an uncontested divorce that we offer flat rate plans, pay as you go plans and payment plans to accommodate your specific needs. If you have any questions about the process and about how we can help just let us know.

Client Testimonials

"Robin was attentive, prompt, helpful, and down-to-earth. It was easy to talk to her and she always explained things in language that I could understand. ...Read More

Frequently Asked Questions

What makes a divorce more expensive?

I get asked this question often. There are several things that can make a divorce more expensive than others. Some cases are simply more complex. A divorce with children where custody is disputed is more complex than one that does not even involve children. A divorce with businesses or property that need to be divided is more complex than a divorce without significant property or business evaluations. Another thing that makes a divorce more expensive is trials and hearings. When it is possible I try to settle cases through a number of different means. Not only does it save money but it is far less stressful and much quicker than the court system. However, the number one thing that makes a divorce more expensive is one or both parties being unreasonable in the process. Clients bring a certain amount of emotion to the divorce process and this often causes them to escalate the cost of the divorce. If there are mental issues or just complex personality issues it is difficult to reach settlement and the court system is the only other way to resolve the divorce. That being said, most of my cases settle and do not need trial. I have a number of things I do to try to save my client’s money. I’ve been through a costly divorce myself and know what it feels like to be in an expensive divorce. I do everything in my power to help my clients make it through the process without unnecessary expense.

How much does a divorce cost?

Realistically, a very simple divorce cost around $2500. This would be a case where the parties are pretty much in agreement and the lawyer is just seeing to it that the client has the correct documents filed and the correct provisions in the decree to hopefully avoid any future need for litigation. People see advertisements for divorces for less than this, but these often involve just giving clients a generic form that does not provide for the proper closing documents for their case. The filing fees are between $300 and $400 depending on the complexity of the case and the county in which it is filed, and there are fees for service of process. There are documents that must be prepared such as the Petition for Divorce, the Final Decree of Divorce (which may need to include a parenting plan) and any documents needed to transfer title or divide assets without tax consequences. There is also at least one hearing at the end of the divorce.

Why do I need an attorney?

There are a number of reasons, besides convenience, for hiring an attorney. Not only does an attorney understand the complex laws involved in a family law case, but they are also a neutral party that can look at the case objectively. If you are going through a divorce then the odds are you are too close to the case to objectively evaluate the case. Approximately 85% or more cases will negotiate a settlement and to effectively accomplish this objectivity is key. Even though I practice family law exclusively, I had an attorney represent me when I went through a divorce to provide that objectivity.

An attorney will also make sure that you have all the closing documents needed to transfer title, deed, or divide assets. I often get calls from people who gave the house to their spouse in the divorce but forgot that they are still on the mortgage or never transferred title and cannot get the spouse to cooperate years later when they are wanting to sell the house. Also, I get calls from people that never dealt properly with pensions or retirement benefits. Most of the time there is little that can be done years later. Lastly, if you decide to represent yourself in court you are at a disadvantage if you do not have an attorney. The court is not allowed to give you legal advice and you are held to the same standard of knowledge of the law and procedure as an attorney.

How do I select an attorney that is right for me?

The best way to select the right attorney for you is to meet with them. This is usually accomplished during a consultation. First off, I think it is important that you select an attorney that primarily practices in family law. They need to be familiar with the laws in family law and routinely practice in front of the family law judges.

I think it is important that they be willing to negotiate a settlement or try the case, depending on what is necessary in your case. Some lawyers only try to settle cases and if they cannot get it settled they let the case just sit in hopes that it will settle itself. They do not want to go to court to get it resolved. Other lawyers only want to go to court because it traditionally means they make more money. I think it is important that your lawyer have at least a settlement success rate of 85%, which is statistically the average for family law, and also have a track record of going to court when necessary.

It is important that you select an attorney that will communicate with you in a timely fashion. This is one of the complaints I hear most often. My office always returns emails and phone calls in a timely fashion and keeps the client informed as their case progresses.

Lastly, I think it is important that you look for a lawyer that keeps a professional approach to the case. I hear people say they want a fighter, but truth is you want someone that will give you realistic advice and be a strong advocate in court, not a lawyer that makes threats all the time. The judges are familiar with the “bully” tactics and are quite frankly not very receptive to such antics. Judges want to hear from a lawyer that understands the law and represents their client’s realistic expectations in court.

Why do I need a consultation?

The consultation is not only a time for you to meet the attorney and see if the attorney will meet your needs and work well with you, but it is also a time to get an evaluation from the attorney as to the realistic outcome of your case. I charge less than 30% of my hourly rate for the consultation so, be sure to bring a list of questions with you to the consultation so that you can get a good overview of your case, the process involved, and the likely costs involved.