Bryan, Texas Property Division Attorney
Divorce can be an emotionally trying time in anyone’s life. Separating from your spouse, moving out of your home, and determining who has custody of your kids are all potentials for stress and heartbreak.
To add to your stress, you also need to be seriously thinking about finances. One of the most difficult decisions that needs to be made during a divorce is how to divide your property between you and your spouse.
The good news is that you don’t have to do it alone. With the help of an experienced Bryan, Texas divorce attorney like our team at C.E. Borman, property division can be a straightforward and fair process that respects your needs at all costs.
How Property Division Works in Texas
Texas is a “community property” state, which means that certain assets and debts that you acquire during your marriage belong equally to both you and your spouse. If you decide to end your marriage, you will have to come up with a plan for who gets what.
Other property and debts, however, are considered “separate property,” which means they belong to either you or your spouse alone. You will not be asked to give up any separate property in your divorce. But the challenge comes in determining what counts as community property and what counts separate property.
In order to come to an agreement, you can rely on the experience of a Bryan divorce attorney to help you and your spouse negotiate a settlement. If negotiation isn’t working, you can also hire a third-party mediator to sit down with you and your spouse and facilitate a plan that works for both of you. A judge will then approve your plan and issue a court order defining how your property should be divided.
But if mediation still doesn’t do the trick, your dedicated divorce attorney will go to court and make your case in front of a judge.
Community Property and Separate Property
In general, all income and big purchases made during the marriage tend to be considered community property. Here are some examples:
- Income from employment
- Real estate bought during the marriage
- Vehicles bought during the marriage
- Individual contributions to pension, 401K, or other retirement accounts
- Unemployment compensation and payment for lost wages
- Contents of all checking and savings accounts
Separate property mostly includes things that you owned before the marriage, things you acquired as a gift, and anything that you and your spouse agree belongs to you. Here are a few examples of separate property:
- A house bought before the marriage
- Jewelry given to one spouse by the other spouse
- One spouse’s inheritance
- One spouse’s personal injury settlement
- A car bought during the marriage that both spouses agree belongs to one spouse
How the Court Makes Property Division Decisions
When you and your spouse can’t agree on the division of your property, you will have to argue your case in a hearing before a judge. The judge will weigh both of your arguments and make a decision on how to fairly divide your property.
The first thing to understand is that, just because certain property is considered “community property,” that doesn’t mean that a judge will necessarily divide it 50/50.
Here are some of the factors that a judge will weigh when making this decision:
- Both spouses’ age and health
- Earning capacity
- Education levels
- Business opportunities
- Who has custody of your children
- Amount of separate property each spouse owns
- Grounds for a fault-based divorce, if any
Fighting with your spouse over how to divide your property is a stressful and unpleasant experience. At C.E. Borman, we’ve been helping our clients through divorce for decades, and we understand how difficult it can be.
That’s why we use all of our experience and dedication to protect your rights and help you get the settlement that’s best for you and your family. Here’s how we do it:
- First, we help you file, serve your spouse, and lay out all of the contested property division issues.
- Then we come up with a plan for how to resolve those issues. If you and your spouse can come to an agreement through negotiation or mediation, all the better! We will aid with negotiating your settlement, finding a third-party mediator, and walking you through all of the paperwork.
- If you and your spouse are unable to decide on a settlement through mediation, we prepare for litigation. When you need someone to go to bat for you in the courtroom, we don’t hesitate to step in.