Woman taking off wedding ring as she considers divorce

Divorce Attorney

Divorce can be a complex, confusing, and exhausting process, especially if you and your spouse have children or share property and assets.

Divorce lawyer Donna J. Smiedt and her team can stand by your side and help protect your assets and your relationship with your children. 

See why clients in the Arlington, TX, area trust the Family Law Firm of Donna J. Smiedt to protect them during a legal separation. 

We Can Help In or Out of Court 

Divorce lawyer Donna Smiedt offers thorough, compassionate legal advice to help you find the best avenue for your case and achieve the best possible outcome. We can represent you in court and help file important documents so you don't miss your chance to fight for custody, visitation rights, or property. To speak with our attorneys, call (817) 572-9900

When Do You Need a Lawyer? 

There are many factors that can add emotional, financial, and legal complications to the divorce process and make your situation harder. Ms. Donna Smiedt and her team can ask the right questions and fight to protect your rights and assets when an amicable solution isn't possible. If you are going through a legal separation, it is especially important you get the help of a divorce attorney when: 

Daughter hugging father while mother sits in the background

You Have Children

These cases are made all the more complicated when children are involved. Our attorneys will work hard to ensure that your children's best interests are upheld during the child custody and child support agreements. 

House property

You Share Property

Because marital property in Texas is not divided evenly but in a "fair and just" manner, you need a skilled divorce attorney who can protect your property and best interests throughout the division process.

Lawyer and former spouse

Your Ex Has an Attorney

If your former spouse has enlisted the help of an attorney, you need to do so as well. Without the right support in your corner, you run the risk of an unfavorable settlement. We support clients throughout Southlake, Westover Hills, and the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex.

Looking for a Divorce Lawyer? Request a Consultation Today

We understand that this is a difficult time for your family, and we want to help. Our attorneys exclusively practice family law so that we can provide you with focused legal care.

Our lead attorney, Donna J Smiedt, is a board-certified family law attorney who has been practicing family law since 1986. Donna has helped many families in Southlake, Westover Hills, Arlington, Fort Worth, and the surrounding areas achieve positive resolutions to their cases. 

To speak to a lawyer about your case, reach out online or call us at:

 (817) 572-9900

divorce attorney Donna J Smiedt

"The entire team was excellent." A Glowing Review for Our Arlington Law Firm

"The entire team at The Family Law Firm was excellent in every aspect of my custody case. Donna J Smiedt was fantastic. Everyone was extremely helpful and professional throughout the entire process. Their preparation and dedication to my case was outstanding. I have and will continue to refer anyone going through a challenging situation to speak with Donna and her team." niranjan agnew


Receiving key from property

Protect Your Assets & Interests

Dividing your property and debt can be a stressful process. Without the help of a divorce lawyer, you are at risk of dividing your assets unjustly or unfairly. Our Arlington, TX, divorce attorneys have handled many complex and high-asset divorces. We can ensure that your assets are divided in a fair, just manner that represents your best interests.

Father and daughter smiling and hugging

Plan for a Happy Future

Divorces are difficult, but our Arlington, TX, attorneys want to help you move on and have the happiest life possible. In addition to assisting with the dissolution of your marriage, we can help you arrange child custody, child support, and visitation rights. Because these agreements are an important part of your new day-to-day life, our attorneys want you to be happy with the decisions and settlements.

The Family Law Firm of Donna J Smiedt interior

Feel Supported Throughout

Our Arlington, TX, law firm cares about you as a person and not just a client. We understand that this is a very stressful and emotional time for your entire family, and The Family Law Firm of Donna J Smiedt wants you to feel supported from start to finish. Our Arlington office is warm, comfortable, and intimate, giving you the relaxing, personal atmosphere you need during this trying time. 

You Are Far From Alone If You Are Considering Divorce

"She helped me immensely" A Top-Rated Law Office in the Arlington, TX, Area

"Donna is an amazing, very talented family law attorney that I recommend highly.  She helped me immensely during a very difficult time of my life during my divorce.  She works tirelessly to ensure her clients are well represented, covers all contingencies, (even those you don’t think off), and the bottom line is she WINS the best outcome for your family." Catherine C.

Specific Laws Governing Divorce in Texas

Residency Requirements

Before filing for a divorce, either you or your spouse must have been a continuous resident of Texas for at least six months. Additionally, one of you must have been a resident of the county in which you are filing for at least 90 days.

A "No-Fault State"

You do not need a specific reason for dissolving your marriage. Since Texas is a “no-fault” state, you can list “insupportability” as the cause of divorce when you petition the court, indicating a conflict of personalities within your marriage.


Texas law includes "conservatorship" child custody, which means that the courts prefer to give joint custody of children. This would allow both parents to have an equal say in their children's upbringing, but important factors such as abuse, neglect, and other conditions can affect a parent's claim to join custody. 

Community Property

Texas is also a "community property" state, which means that both parties of marriage own any property acquired during the marriage. You may claim certain property as "separate," which means you are the sole owner of it, but you must prove that it was earned before or after your marriage. 

Just and Right Division 

Under Texas law, property owned by both parties of the marriage is subject to just and right division, which means that the way property is divided by the court can be affected by signs of fault or unequal earning power. 

Reasons for Separation  Determining Fault During Divorce 

In the courts of Texas, a spouse can claim that their former partner's actions or specific situations led to the end of the relationship. Some examples of fault in a divorce include:

  • Cruel treatment
  • Confinement to a mental hospital for three or more years
  • Adultery 
  • Intentional abandonment for a year or more
  • Felony convictions that result in incarceration of a year or more
  • Separate living arrangements that last three years or longer

If one spouse is at fault for the end of the marriage, Texas courts may take that into consideration while dividing property. 

Securing Alimony in Texas

Alimony, sometimes called "spousal maintenance" or "spousal support," is a type of financial support that one party pays to the other according to court orders. Securing alimony is very difficult in Texas and you should not plan your finances around receiving these payments. Our firm is here to help clients throughout the region, including Southlake and Westover Hills, understand every aspect of this area of law.

Ready to Discuss Your Case  with a Divorce Lawyer?

Donna Smiedt and everyone at our law firm serving Arlington, TX, and greater Fort Worth work hard to minimize the stress and complexity of your divorce. Our law office even has divorce therapy dogs to help you feel as comfortable and relaxed as possible throughout the process. Our team can help clients involved in spousal support cases or complex, high-asset divorces.

To learn more about our legal services, contact our office online or call us at (817) 572-9900 and speak to a member of our friendly staff today.

Office interior

"I'd hire them again in a heartbeat." Read a 5-Star Review

"Donna successfully helped me get what I wanted out of my case. She charged a reasonable fee for her services and never once wasted my time. I would hire The Family Law Firm again in a heartbeat should I ever need her services again." Charity Vicente, 5-Star Review

Hundreds of Thousands of Couples  End Their Marriages Each Year

Don't let guilt or shame stop you from seeking help during this difficult time in your life. 

In 2021, there were more than 689,000 divorces & annulments in the United States
*According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in a study that excluded data from California, Hawaii, Indiana, Minnesota, and New Mexico

What to Expect Throughout the Divorce Process

Our law firm in Arlington, TX, can help you through each and every step. 

Divorce can be an especially difficult and complicated time in your life. We do what we can to relieve your burden with dedicated and compassionate representation. We even have divorce therapy dogs at our office to provide some additional comfort and help you feel positive about your next steps. 
Divorce can be an especially difficult and complicated time in your life. We do what we can to relieve your burden with dedicated and compassionate representation. We even have divorce therapy dogs at our office to provide some additional comfort and help you feel positive about your next steps. 


The first step in a typical Texas divorce process is filing an Original Petition for Divorce with the court. One spouse acts as the petitioner and is required to have the papers personally delivered to the other spouse, or the respondent.

Pending Period

If no restraining order is issued, the respondent has 20 days to file an answer. The court may also consider placing temporary orders while the divorce is pending.


While many cases are settled out of court through mediation or collaboration, some couples are unable to reach an agreement. In these cases, the suit goes to court and final decisions are made by the judge. During the trial, you will need a qualified family law attorney to represent you and protect your best interests.

Final Decree

At the conclusion of the trial, a final decree of divorce is presented to the judge for signature. This document contains all the rulings of the court and resolves all issues pertaining to the court. It is a binding legal document for both parties.

Loved by Our Clients

"Mrs. Donna was an extremely professional and patient individual. He helped myself and my son through a very rough and long time. I would definitely reccomend him to anyone in need of family law attorneys that need an expert in the field." Allison Mcdonald

Have Questions About the Process?  Ask a Board-Certified Attorney

Divorce lawyer Donna Smiedt and her legal team in Arlington offer thorough, compassionate legal advice to help you determine the best avenue for your case and achieve the best possible outcome. Ms. Smiedt has helped clients with their family law and divorce cases since she began practicing in 1986. 

We understand that this process can be confusing. Contact our law firm with your questions or discuss your situation in-depth during a consultation with our attorneys by calling our office at:

(817) 572-9900

The Family Law Firm of Donna J. Smiedt front exterior
Located off of Arkansas Lane in Arlington, our firm serves the Dallas and Fort Worth area, including Southlake and Westover Hills, from our office in Tarrant County. 

Fees & Payment Options at Our Office Is it your first time hiring a lawyer?

Knowing what to expect when it comes to legal fees can help you feel more prepared. Clients of The Family Law Firm of Donna J Smiedt can typically expect to pay a reasonable initial consultation fee. If you decide that we are the right lawyers to represent your case, you will receive a contract that you can sign immediately or later on. 

Frequently Asked Questions  About Legal Separation and Family Law in Texas 

Is it worth getting a divorce lawyer?

Yes, many common divorce situations require a lawyer’s help because both parties cannot agree on major issues such as the division of property and child custody. Even in a collaborative divorce, it’s easy to lose track of important factors that can impact the property you receive and who is responsible for certain debts. A lawyer can help you keep track of every aspect of the divorce and make sure you receive your rightful property according to the law. 

What if my former partner and I can’t agree on anything? 

If you and your ex cannot come to an agreement on the distribution of property, child custody, or other divisions, then that division will be decided in court. While settling disputes in court is not the best choice for everyone, it can be the only viable option when your partner is uncooperative or refuses to participate in the divorce. Our law firm can represent you in court and fight for your rights. 

What information do I have to share with my divorce lawyer?

You must share all information about your property, including bank accounts, investments, debts, etc. Intentionally leaving any items out of your listed properties can lead to sanctions and other penalties. We also strongly recommend disclosing information about any threats, abuse, neglect, or other factors that could place you or your children in danger. We can help you file for temporary restraining orders and other safety measures to protect you and your family. 

Do I need my former partner to sign off on the divorce papers? 

No, you can file a divorce even when the other party refuses to participate in the proceedings. When a divorce case is brought before the court, refusing to participate will only take away the respondent’s chance to argue their case and have any influence in the court’s decisions regarding custody, visitation, property, etc. 

"An amazing lawyer!" Another 5-Star Review

"Donna was an amazing lawyer in my case! She made things go by as smooth as possible and I would recommend her to anyone." Ashley Hayes
the team at The Family Law Firm of Donna J Smiedt

The Family Law Firm of Donna J Smiedt

The Family Law Firm of Donna J Smiedt is the premier destination for clients who need representation during a divorce, adoption, or other family law matters. Donna J. Smiedt has been in practice since 1986 and is a Board Certified Family Law Attorney – Texas Board of Legal Specialization. Her other professional affiliations include:

  • Texas Bar College
  • Arlington Bar Association
  • Tarrant County Bar Association
  • Texas Academy of Family Law Specialists

To schedule a consultation at our Arlington or Southlake, TX, law firm, contact us online or call (817) 572-9900.

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