Chief Justice Gray, Justice Davis, and Justice Scoggins
for divorce may not be maintained in this state unless at
the time the suit is filed either the petitioner or the
respondent has been:
(1) a domiciliary of this state for the preceding six-month
(2) a resident of the county in which the suit is filed for
the preceding 90-day period.
Tex. Fam. Code Ann. § 6.301 (West 2006) (emphasis
added). For a second time, we are asked to determine whether
the respondent, Judge William Bosworth of the 413th Judicial
District Court, abused his discretion by finding that an
informal marriage existed between relator Troy Paul and real
party in interest Destiny Spillers and awarding interim
attorney's fees to Destiny from Troy. See generally
In re Paul, No. 10-16-00004-CV, 2016 Tex.App. LEXIS 4766
(Tex. App.-Waco May 5, 2016, orig. proceeding) (mem. op.). At
issue in the first mandamus was the trial court's award
of $425, 000 in interim attorney's fees to Destiny;
however, the trial court has since awarded Destiny an
additional $331, 000 in interim attorney's fees, for a
sum total of $756, 000. See id. at *3. In the first
mandamus, we concluded that the record evidence failed to
establish that Destiny had met the ninety-day-residency
requirement of section 6.301 of the Family Code at the time
she filed her counter-petition for divorce. See id.
at *7. Despite more than three-quarters of a million dollars
in interim attorney's fees awarded, we once again
conclude that Destiny has not satisfied the residency
requirement of section 6.301 because the mandamus record does
not show that she has filed an amended divorce petition after
establishing residence in Johnson County for ninety days. We
cannot get to the merits of any issue until the petitioner is
properly before the trial court, and she is not yet there.
Accordingly, we conclude that the respondent abused his
discretion in entering the complained-of orders and, thus,
conditionally grant Troy's petition for writ of mandamus.
the underlying facts in this dispute were recited in the
first mandamus. See id. at **1-3. After the issuance
of our memorandum opinion in the first mandamus on May 5,
2016, the trial court conducted a hearing on the residency
requirement. At the hearing on August 31, 2016, Destiny
testified that she has rented a house on Vaden Avenue in
Burleson, Texas, for ninety-one days before the hearing.
Destiny confirmed that the house is located in Johnson County
and that she intends to remain a resident of Johnson County.
Despite this testimony, nothing in the mandamus record
indicates that Destiny filed an amended divorce petition
asserting that she now satisfies the ninety-day residency
requirement of section 6.301 of the Family Code based on her
lease of a house on Vaden Avenue. See Tex. Fam. Code
Ann. § 6.301. In any event, the trial court concluded
that Destiny is a resident of Johnson County and that she
satisfied the ninety-day residency requirement. At a later
hearing on September 26, 2016, the trial court ordered that
Troy pay to Destiny the original $425, 000 in interim
attorney's fees, as well as $331, 000 in additional
interim attorney's fees, for a sum total of $756, 000 in
interim attorney's fees. The trial court also ordered
Troy to pay temporary spousal support to Destiny and
reaffirmed its earlier finding that Destiny met her
prima-facie burden of proving that an informal marriage
existed between Troy and her. Thereafter, Troy filed a
petition for writ of mandamus in this matter.
Standard of Review
is an extraordinary remedy that will issue only to correct a
clear abuse of discretion when there is "no adequate
remedy by appeal." In re Prudential Ins. Co. of
Am., 148 S.W.3d 124, 135-36 (Tex. 2004) (orig.
proceeding) (citations omitted). "A trial court has no
'discretion' in determining what the law is or
applying the law to the facts." Walker v.
Packer, 827 S.W.2d 833, 840 (Tex. 1992). "Thus, a
clear failure by the trial court to analyze or apply the law
correctly will constitute an abuse of discretion."
Id. (citations omitted). In addition, a trial court
clearly abuses its discretion if it reaches a decision so
arbitrary and unreasonable as to amount to a clear and
prejudicial error of law. Id. at 839. Regarding the
resolution of factual issues or matters committed to the
trial court's discretion, relator must establish that the
trial court could reasonably have reached only one decision.
Id. at 839-40. We cannot disturb the trial
court's decision unless it is shown to be arbitrary and
unreasonable, even if we would have decided the issue
differently. Id. at 840.
respect to the "adequate remedy by appeal" prong,
the Texas Supreme Court has noted that the operative word,
"adequate, " does not have a comprehensive
definition. In re Prudential Ins. Co. of Am., 148
S.W.3d at 136. "Instead, it is simply a proxy for the
careful balance of jurisprudential considerations that
determine when appellate courts will use original mandamus
proceedings to review the actions of lower courts."
In re Reynolds, 369 S.W.3d 638, 646 (Tex. App.-Tyler
2012, orig. proceeding) (citing In re Prudential Ins. Co.
of Am., 148 S.W.3d at 136). "These considerations
include both public and private interests, and the
determination is practical and prudential rather than
abstract or formulaic." Id. (citing In re
Prudential Ins. Co. of Am., 148 S.W.3d at 136).
Therefore, an appellate remedy may be inadequate when the
benefits to mandamus review outweigh the detriments. See
In re McAllen Med. Ctr., Inc., 275 S.W.3d 458, 462,
468-69 (Tex. 2008) (orig. proceeding); In re Team Rocket,
L.P., 256 S.W.3d 257, 262 (Tex. 2008) (orig.
proceeding). "Mandamus will not issue when the law
provides another, plain, adequate, and complete remedy."
In re Tex. Dep't of Family & Protective
Servs., 210 S.W.3d 609, 613 (Tex. 2006).
seventh issue, Troy complains about the trial court's
handling of the residency issue. As noted in the first
mandamus and above, section ...