Divorce Bill Could Make Getting a Divorce Harder - KFDA - NewsChannel 10 / Amarillo News, Weather, Sports

Divorce Bill Could Make Getting a Divorce Harder

Representative Warren Chisum Representative Warren Chisum
Attorney Mike Watkins Attorney Mike Watkins

The wait time to finalize a divorce and remarry could be getting longer in the state of Texas.

That is if sponsor representative Warren Chisum of Pampa's divorce bill passes next legislative session.

The proposed bill will give couples choosing to divorce a choice. Either take a 10 hour marriage strengthening class or wait two years to finalize the divorce.

Attorney Mike Watkins says the government should not hinder a couple from getting out of a bad marriage.

Representative Warren Chisum says divorce is costing Texans $3,000 dollars but this bill will reduce that cost significantly.

So that's about $200 dollars so every adult in the state of Texas. So I want to save some of that $200, says.

But attorney Mike Watkins says it is not that easy.

"I do not think an extended waiting period for a divorce is a good idea," he says, "Over the years Representative Chisum has put out efforts like this and I applaude his efforts but I don't think hindering someone's ability to get out of a bad marriage is best for society."

He says the marriage bill passed this session that offers counseling in exchange for waving the marriage license fee is good enough.

"Some ideas are education prior to marriage," says Watkins. "Lots of churches institute that and that seems to lead to strong marriages. I do think people put a lot of thought into it before they give up on their marriage. I do think if they put more thought into the marriage then we wouldn't be addressing this issue.

Representative Chisum says he has support from other lawmakers in Austin and is confident changes will be made to current divorce policies.

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