County law library staff can provide limited help
If you are contemplating divorce, you probably realize you’ve some tough choices to make, among them whether to retain an attorney or not. If you’re hoping for an amicable, uncontested divorce, you may be worrying about being perceived as “playing hardball” if you hire an attorney.
On the contrary, family experts and legal authorities recommend that each party is represented, even in an uncontested action. At the very least, they say, the Petitioner (the party filing the complaint) should have an attorney to ensure the filing is legal and the decree enforceable. Then the Respondent should have an attorney look over the proposed decree.
Furthermore, experts recommend that both spouses budget time, energy and funds for professional counseling–even in the simplest uncontested divorces, in which both parties recognize the relationship has run its course, the loss and grief can be overwhelming.
Addressing domestic violence
At the other end of the spectrum, if your relationship includes domestic violence, it must be addressed immediately, authorities believe. In addition to the legal aspects involved, counseling and domestic violence are both areas in which a trained, experienced attorney can help immensely.
Residents of Tarrant County and Arlington, Texas also have a number of agencies and facilities that can help, including these online resources:
- Arlington Police Department, Victim Services Unit;
- District Attorney’s Family Violence Unit;
- Safe Haven;
- Tarrant County CSCD program;
- Violence Against Women & housing vouchers;
- Arlington housing vouchers.
Forms page, law library
First, here’s a link to a page about forms, which says, “For most legal procedures, including divorce and name changes, standardized forms do not exist. Documents must be created using sample wording obtained from legal form books.
“The Tarrant County Law Library staff can direct you to the relevant information that you can use to select the proper paperwork. You can then photocopy the information and use it to create your own personalized documents. Be advised that the library staff cannot select the documents for you or advise you in drawing them up. It will be your responsibility to read the information and identify what is necessary for you own individual situation. In addition the library does not keep track of the various filing fees.”
The Family Law District Clerk’s phone number is 817-884-1265. Associated fees can be seen here.
Tarrant County and the ‘e-court’
More info is found at the Tarrant County “e-court” page for “Pro Se Instructions for Divorce with Children” (pro se means representing one’s self, with no attorney), with links that do turn up forms, despite the earlier admonition:
The Texas Young Lawyers Association published the Pro Se Divorce Handbook to answer many of your questions. You can read it online at www.tyla.org or at Tarrant County Law Library. You can get free divorce forms at www.FreeTexasForms.org.
Please do not ask the court clerk for legal advice. By law, only lawyers may give legal advice. The clerks are not attorneys. For legal advice you need to hire an attorney. You can also attend one of the free legal clinic listed on the attached sheet.
We can help. If you’re ready to begin the search for a compatible, well trained, experienced divorce attorney, you can start with our free case evaluation. If you need more information, please browse our site, using the tabs at the top of the page.
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