When you get a divorce, often the best route is to settle the different subjects that come up, like property distribution and child support, without the involvement of the court. This is called divorce mediation, or collaborative law. There are certain rules that you and your attorney need to follow from the Texas Family Code.
The first one is that it must be written down and executed, much like a contract, by both parties. It has to have proper language and be clear on what is being settled. It must have the statement that both of you agree to work collaboratively and will do your best to ensure that this is done without the inclusion of the court.
It also states that you must have legal representation and the document must identify who is representing you in this process. It needs to be a clear and concise agreement between all parties involved.
Some of the provisions in this agreement include the fact that you have both decided to take this action, that there was no coercion and that you both realize that the court will not be involved in this process. Only you two and your attorneys.
You need to state what you will do if the process doesn’t work. You can both work with the same lawyer, but that can get sticky sometimes. You need to do your research because there are some things that are not to be in the agreement. The Texas Family Code spells it out in detail.
The divorce mediation begins when both of you sign the documents. No court in Texas can order you to sign this document. Again, you cannot be coerced into this action. It has to be something that you are willing to do.
Source: Texas Family Code, “Collaborative family law act,” accessed Nov. 18, 2015