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Protecting Your Interests During Property Division

 Posted on December 22, 2023 in Property Division

TX divorce lawyerWhen facing a divorce in Texas, one major concern is how marital property will be divided – and how it will impact your financial future. As a “community property” state, the assets accumulated and debts shared during your marriage must be split equitably between spouses. It is vital to protect your entitlements in the process. A Texas property division lawyer can help make sure you take the proper steps.

Understand What Comprises Marital Property

The property subject to division in your Texas divorce encompasses the house, land, retirement investments, savings accounts, and debts tied to you and your spouse jointly during the marriage—regardless of whose name is on the accounts or titles. Everything is essentially considered shared 50/50 pending “just and right” adjustments. Even separate inherited or gifted property can become marital property. An attorney can determine your spouse’s claims.

Gather Financial Evidence

A key first step after filing your petition is collecting documents and details on all financial accounts, assets, and debts in either party’s name over the course of the marriage. Tax returns, income statements, mortgage data, bank and investment records, credit card statements, car loan balances, and appraisals will be needed to value property for division. Leave out nothing to pursue your rights.

Analyze or Propose an Initial Asset Split

Based on evidence, your attorney can calculate contributions made toward acquiring property and debt obligations while married. Typically, Texas follows a 50/50 split, but if your contributions significantly exceeded your spouse’s, you may argue for 60/40 or an amount the court finds reasonable. Offering an initial proposal demonstrates an understanding of state laws and a commitment to negotiate fairly.

Consider Tax Consequences

Certain property division arrangements may result in heavier tax penalties than others. For example, keeping the house could oblige you to pay all capital gains taxes later. Retirement account splits also have distinct rules. Work through alternatives like selling versus retaining assets and debt transfers to secure the best post-divorce arrangement for you from a tax standpoint.

Prepare for Mediation

Most contested divorce cases enter court-ordered mediation to develop the property split and address other outstanding issues like child custody. Mediation facilitates compromises that satisfy both parties more than rulings imposed by a judge at trial. Cooperating reasonably advances resolution in your favor while reserving rights to further litigation if you do not achieve appropriate terms.

Contact a Denton, TX Family Law Lawyer

The property division process in a Texas divorce has lasting financial ramifications. However, being proactive from the start about documentation, evaluation, negotiation strategy, and understanding state guidelines applicable to asset distribution will help ensure the fairest final settlement to protect your economic interests after the marriage dissolves.  A Denton County, TX family law attorney can help you navigate the steps. Call The Law Office of Linda Risinger at 972-294-6533 for a free consultation.

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