Besides children, the most difficult part of a divorce is splitting the stuff. What was once the wonderful “ours” has now become the combative “mine.” Needless to say this has spawned many drawn out divorces and made many a lawyer some extra dollars.
You see, while most states have clear laws dividing property, there is always wiggle room. Like in Texas, where the law says that all marital property is split 50/50, but with the wiggle room that a judge can award more to one spouse on fairness grounds.
How do you figure these things out?
One helpful place to start is FindLaw's Mini-Guide to Divorce and Property Division. This guide helps to lay out the basics of property when it comes to divorce. It will give you the basics and then link you to more information or the people that can help you get where you need to go.
One of the other aspects of Texas marital property law that has some wiggle room is the actual identification of what is martial property.
Generally, anything owned prior to marriage is separate property, owned by the spouse that originally acquired it. However, if that spouse takes certain actions they could have made a gift of their separate property to the community, thus it becomes marital property.
In these types of situations, the easiest solution is an agreement between the spouses. That way there is no confusion about who owns what, and how the property will be divided. These agreements can also cover child support, visitation, and custody, all without a drawn out court battle.
Even when you are negotiating for an agreement, an attorney can be helpful. This is especially true if one spouse has a lawyer, because then that spouse may have extra information that would be helpful in negotiations.
Good luck in your family life, but know that there are plenty of resources at FindLaw.com if you need them. We're here to help.
- Contact a Family Law Lawyer in Houston (FindLaw)
- Summary of Texas Laws On Dividing Marital Property (FindLaw's Houston Family Law Blog)
- Texas Couple has Booming Cookie Business; Is It Marital Property? (FindLaw's Houston Family Law Blog)