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What happens if your spouse does not want a divorce?

In the past, a person seeking a divorce had to allege some kind of marital wrongdoing. That is no longer the case, however. Provided one partner wants out, he or she can use the Lone Star State’s no-fault divorce rules to seek an end to the marriage.

If your husband or wife wants to remain married, he or she may try to dissuade you from filing for divorce. This typically happens in one of three ways.

1. Your spouse refuses to accept service

Divorce proceedings are essentially civil lawsuits someone must initiate. To do so, you must serve your spouse with divorce papers. Refusing to accept service is a stalling tactic that is not likely to work, at least not forever.

If you cannot serve your partner because he or she hides from the process server, you can likely move forward with an alternative type of service. For your soon-to-be ex-spouse, this may result in him or her having less control over the divorce process.

As a result, especially after consulting with an attorney, your spouse is apt to accept traditional process service.

2. Your spouse does not sign the divorce settlement

Settling a divorce is often the fastest and most cost-effective way to end a marriage. With this approach, you and your spouse negotiate property distribution and other matters before writing a formal settlement agreement.

Unfortunately, you cannot force your spouse to sign a divorce settlement. A judge probably cannot either.

Nonetheless, you can probably move forward with a trial that eventually results in the end of your marriage. If your spouse refuses to sign the divorce decree, a judge will undoubtedly finalize it over his or her objections.

3. Your spouse unnecessarily complicates your divorce

While your spouse cannot stop you from proceeding with a divorce, he or she may unnecessarily complicate matters for you. Delay tactics only work for so long, though. Sooner or later, for a variety of reasons, a judge is apt to move things along.

If you suspect your spouse may try to complicate or delay your divorce, you should develop a coping and management strategy. Nevertheless, if you want out of your marriage, your divorce is probably inevitable.