Bell County Updates Standing Order for Family Cases

Family Law

Bell County has a standing order that applies to cases regarding property, children, and the conduct of both parties in a divorce suit or suits related to parent-child relationships. The standing order outlines what is permissible behavior in family law cases, including rules for court hearings. Effective September 1, 2020, the Standing Order was changed to add that all family law matters filed on or after September 1 must go through the mediation or collaborative divorce process before going to final trial.

Statistically, approximately 97% of cases that go to mediation or collaborative divorce will settle and settle with terms everyone can live with. Even though you’re spending money for this, the odds are hugely in your favor you will resolve the case and be content with the outcome. Mediation and collaborative divorce are both substantially more cost-effective, speedier processes compared to litigation, so this standing order is beneficial for all parties involved, especially children.

More About Bell County’s Standing Order

At first glance, Bell County’s court-mandated alternative dispute resolution may seem like an extra step in your mission to dissolve your marriage, but alternative dispute resolution methods are often less costly and require less time to achieve a resolution. The chances of you attaining a settlement that better serves everyone’s interests and needs are substantially higher through this approach since you and your spouse will have an active role in determining the results. If your case goes through the litigation process, you will have far less control over the outcome and, due to the high volume of family law cases, it can take months or years before your divorce is finalized. That said, the standing order only requires one attempt at alternative dispute resolution.

Additionally, the standing order requires parents of minor children to attend a parent education and stabilization program within 60 days of filing a petition for divorce or any other case that may impact the parent-child relationship, unless the court waives this requirement.

Here are some other notable requirements listed in the standing order:

  • The children must not be disrupted. For example, a parent cannot remove children from the state or withdraw them from school or day-care.
  • Both spouses must refrain from using offensive or threatening language when communicating with one another. Spouses must also refrain from contacting one another at an unreasonable hour or in a repetitious manner without a valid reason for communication.
  • Spouses must not destroy, hide, transfer, or otherwise reduce or harm the value of marital or separate property.

To learn more about the revised standing order in Bell County and how it may impact you, contact an experienced family law attorney.

Schedule a Consultation with a Knowledgeable Family Law Attorney

If you plan on filing for divorce or have another family law matter, the standing order in Bell County will impact you if you file on or after September 1, 2020. Contact the family law team at the Law Office of Nancy Perry Eaton, PLLC for the experienced representation you need to navigate your case.

Call us at (254) 221-8588 for a consultation.