If you are facing a divorce, you recognize that one of the primary – and often one of the most contentious – tasks that you’ll need to accomplish is the division of your marital property. Because this divorce term will directly affect your finances moving forward, hammering out a division that you both find acceptable can become a sticking point, but knowing the factors that the court will take into consideration in the process of making a determination can help put you in a better position to negotiate your own terms.
An Equitable Division
In Texas, marital property is that property that you and your divorcing spouse purchased or otherwise acquired over the course of your marriage (with the exception of gifts or inheritances made in one of your names only). Upon divorce, marital property must be divided equitably, which means fairly when you factor in all relevant circumstances. It is these circumstances that can sway the court’s decision-making in the division of marital property, and this is why it is a good idea to have a working understanding of the factors that the court deems relevant as you move forward through the divorce process.
The Court’s Position
When it comes to the division of your marital property, the court is going for what’s fair – not necessarily for what is exactly equal – and toward this end, it will take all of the following factors into careful consideration:
The duration of your marriage
The nature of the property to be divided
Whether fault played a role in your divorce, and if so, any benefits the party who is not at fault would have experienced by remaining married (read more about fault-based divorce in Texas)
Whether either of you perpetrated any other kind of fraud against the other
You and your divorcing spouse’s separate earning power
You and your divorcing spouse’s separate levels of education
The business and employment opportunities available to each of you
How wide the divide is between how much you and your divorcing spouse earn
You and your divorcing spouse’s ages and relative mental and physical health (Related: Divorce and Your Spouse’s Mental Health Concerns)
Whether either of you requires future support (in the form of alimony, also called spousal maintenance)
How custody of your shared children has been divided between you and whether one of you is now the primary custodial parent
You and your divorcing spouse’s separate assets (and how they compare)
How your personal finances compare to your soon-to-be ex’s
Whether either of your wasted or otherwise disappeared marital assets prior to your divorce
The tax implications of your divorce terms
The attorney fees involved (on both sides)
Turn to an Experienced Killeen Divorce Attorney for the Legal Guidance You Need
Brett Pritchard at The Law Office of Brett H. Pritchard in Killeen, Texas, is a formidable divorce attorney who is committed to skillfully advocating for a fair division of marital property that works for you. Your case is important, so please do not wait to contact or call us at 254-501-4040 for more information today.