Spouse has the upper hand

My spouse is a police officer. He seems to know more about how to go about getting a divorce better than I do. I can not afford a lawyer but he has plenty of friends that are. He receives free advice from them as to what to do. I feel like a trapped prisoner. He moved out of the marital home in November of 2009 and although the mortgage is in his name, the property that the home is on belonged to my family and my name is on the deed. He still comes and goes as he please and he cuts the grass. All of his personal property has been removed. He has moved on and started a relationship with another woman (Is this o k?). He rarely spends any quality time with our children. We have four children together and I have filed for child support but he has taken this action as me being vindictive. I have been suffering from some health issues and planned to move from all the stress to Texas where I have a sibling who is willing to help but my spouse has stressed that he does not want me to take the children anywhere. I have several questions: How can I obtain a good lawyer when I have no way to come up with the legal fees(please don’t suggest legal aide, already tried that)? Can he keep me from moving with the kids? If not, can my divorce be handled without me being in the state? Do I have to wait a year before proceeding with the divorce (that’s what he tells me)? If I need to file for child custody, please inform me as to how to do this? I really would appreciate as much guidance on this matter as possible.

Your husband’s relationship may affect his alimony obligation to you, and may give you a cause of action against his new girlfriend (if they began seeing one another prior to your separation).

As for the lawyer, I would suggest that you think about borrowing money from a friend or family member, and seeking an award of attorney’s fees from the court. (Your ex can be ordered to pay your attorney’s fees in many situations).

Your ex can refuse to allow you to relocate out of state with the children, and you may attempt to get a court order allowing you to do so.

You cannot get an absolute divorce until you have been living separate and apart for a year, however you may have the court deal with all other issues in the mean time (property division, support, and custody).