Memo from Joanna Staton, Bell County District Clerk

The Texas Department of State Health Services recently advised all District Clerks in the State of Texas to remind the attorneys and law firm staff members in their county that FORM VS-165 (Suit Affecting the Family Relationship) was revised in May 2017.  They have indicated that most attorneys are still using the older version which was revised in July 2015.

Unfortunately, the State will begin returning all older versions of the VS-165 form with a request to resubmit the correct version. The new version is available on their website at  As you are already aware, you are required by HB 2886, Subchapter E, Chapter 6, Family Code, Section 6.410 to efile this form along with your original petition for divorce or annulment of a marriage.

Therefore, effective immediately, please discard the old form and inform your staff to begin using the revised version. Should you have any questions, please feel free to contact Jina Boydstun at 933-5958 or Lacey Martindale at 933-5192. Thank you for your kind and prompt attention to this matter.