Dividing property during the divorce process

On Behalf of | Apr 28, 2017 | Divorce, Property Division

Divorce is never easy, especially when it comes time to decide who gets what. If your spouse wants the main residence, does that mean you will get the vacation house on the lake? What about the oil and gas interests the two of you invested in a few years ago, the retirement accounts, and even the furniture? In order to ensure you are getting a fair divorce settlement, it is important to understand how Texas courts divide marital property.

If you are thinking about divorce, the first thing you should do is to reach out to an attorney in the Plano area to discuss your situation. In order to protect your interests, you will need to be prepared to discuss every aspect of your financial status with your attorney. Read further for more information on dividing marital property in Texas.

Community property

In general, everything that you and your spouse purchased during the course of your marriage is marital property. You and your husband will have to divide anything that the court classifies as marital property. Texas divorce law incorporates the principles of community property. This means that, in theory, you should divide all property obtained during the marriage should be equally divided. However, there are exceptions to this rule. For example, if you have a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement in place, the court will allow you to divide the property according to the contract.

Inception of title rule

Equal division does not necessarily mean perfectly in half. The court will enact the inception of title rule with regard to certain property. This means that the court will examine the status of the property at the time you or your husband acquired it and make a decision based on those facts.

Separate property

Not all the property you acquired during your marriage falls into the realm of community property. For example, any birthday gifts or inheritances you received, family heirlooms, or anything you bought before you were married classifies as separate property in the eyes of the court.

However, if your separate property becomes too commingled with the community property and it is not easy to separate the two, it might lose its status as separate. In this situation, the property will be subject to the division rules that pertain to community property. Furthermore, you will have to provide evidence that the property is separate and should not be included in the community property.

If you are contemplating divorce, it is important to understand how Texas laws apply to marital property. A divorce attorney can provide the help you need to ensure your interests are protected either in a settlement or in litigation.