Who Gets What in a Divorce
When a couple in Texas decides to get a divorce, one of the first things they need to do is figure out how to divide their assets. This can be a difficult process, especially if there are disagreements about what should be considered community property and separate property. Learn more about how asset division works in Texas.
Texas Community Property Laws
In Texas, community property laws dictate how assets are divided in a divorce. Community property is defined as any asset that was acquired during the marriage. This includes income, savings, homes, cars, and other valuable possessions.
Because Texas is a community property state, all assets acquired during the marriage are considered jointly owned by both spouses. When a couple divorces, their community assets must be divided equitably. In contrast, any asset acquired prior to marriage or inherited during the marriage is considered separate property and not subject to division.
There are exceptions to this rule, however. If one spouse uses separate property to improve To give another example, if a spouse inherits a large sum of money and uses it to make improvements on the family home, that money may no longer be considered separate property.
In some cases, it can be difficult to determine whether an asset is considered community or separate property. This is especially true when spouses commingle their assets, or mix them together. For example, if a couple has a joint bank account and one spouse uses money from that account to pay for improvements on their separate property, the court may consider that money to be commingled and subject to division.
In Texas, assets must be divided in a fair and equitable manner. This does not necessarily mean that assets will be divided evenly, but rather that the division will be fair considering the circumstances of the marriage and divorce. For example, if one spouse is awarded primary custody of the couple's child, they may also be awarded a larger share of the assets.
When dividing community property, the court will consider a number of factors, including:
The duration of the marriage
The age and health of each spouse
Each spouse's earning capacity
Each spouse's education and training
Whether either spouse has caregiving responsibilities for children or disabled family members
The value of each spouse's separate property
Any spousal maintenance payments that need to be made
The court may also consider any other factors that it deems relevant to the division of assets.
In Texas, a divorcing couple can work through asset division in one of two ways: they can reach an agreement on their own, or they can let the court decide for them. If the couple is able to agree on how to divide their assets, they can submit a property settlement agreement to the court. If the court approves of the agreement, it will be incorporated into the divorce decree.
If the couple is unable to reach an agreement, they will need to go through the process of litigation. This means that each spouse will present their case to a judge. The judge will then make a decision on how to divide the couple's assets.
Get the Help of an Asset Division Attorney
If you are going through a divorce in Texas, it is important to understand how community property laws will affect your case. An experienced family law attorney can help you protect your rights and interests throughout the divorce process. At Jeff Gilbert Law Office, our team will work to protect your rights to your property throughout the divorce process and will meet your needs at every step.
Learn more or schedule a consultation by calling (979) 200-6556 or by visiting our website.