Houston Community Property Attorney
Determining how to divide up your marital assets when you are already going through a painful divorce is a stressful and overwhelming process. At Holmes, Diggs & Sadler, our experienced community property attorneys are ready to help make the legal matters go smoothly so that you can focus on yourself and your future.
Texas is a community property state. The state defines community property as any property that is acquired during the marriage, with the exclusion of gifts or inheritances. When a couple divorces in Texas, the judge will divide up the property by what they view is “just and right.” It is important to note, however, that separate property in Texas is excluded from this division. The state defines separate property as anything acquired before the marriage; it also includes gifts, inheritances, or property one spouse kept separate from the other.
The “just and right” division of property means that Texas focuses on equity rather than equality of division. It does not mean that each spouse will get 50% of the assets. The judges follow a subjective test rooted in fairness. They will consider the totality of the circumstances surrounding the divorce; to put it simply, it means that the court will look at each spouse’s income, the reason for the breakup, who has custody of the children, and much more.
Division of property is no small task. It may seem simple—you know what is yours and what is your spouse’s. However, in practice, it isn’t nearly that easy. Couples will get so focused on splitting up the big assets while forgetting about the small ones. The community property laws only add to the stress of divorce because there is always that possibility of losing what property you deem to be yours. If you are going through a divorce and need assistance with Texas community property laws, contact the Houston community property lawyers with Holmes, Diggs & Sadler today. We will work tirelessly to help you throughout this process. Contact us at (713) 802-1777, or fill out a contact form on our website.
Why Choose Holmes, Diggs & Sadler?
A divorce is stressful. Trying to understand the legal nuances surrounding it makes it even more difficult. Without the proper knowledge, it is easy to receive less than you deserve in a divorce settlement. Community property is supposed to be based on equitability, but if you are unaware of any hidden assets your spouse may be keeping from you, you could be at risk at receiving less than you are entitled to. With an attorney supporting you through this process, they can find the true value of your estate and work towards getting you a fair amount.
In Houston, there are several different firms to choose from when deciding on who to assist you with your divorce case. Due to the nature of divorce, however, not just any firm will be right. Divorces can be an exhausting, sensitive, and trying time in your life. You need a firm who prides itself on its compassion and open communications with its clients. You need a firm who has a reputation for successful outcomes in these cases. You need Holmes, Diggs & Sadler.
Holmes, Diggs & Sadler‘s legal team has consistently been named as a Super Lawyer in Family and Divorce by Texas Monthly since 2010. Our legal team is capable and ready to handle your case. With over 90 years of combined experience, our firm can assist you with whatever you may need. It is our knowledge, skills, and resources that allow us to be successful. Holmes, Diggs & Sadler stands out from the crowd because we dedicate ourselves to our client. We understand what you’re going through. We want to make this process easier for you and your family. You have a future planned out, and we want to help you move on from this. The attorneys at Holmes, Diggs & Sadler will fight aggressively for your rights.
What is Considered Separate Property?
All property in Texas is presumed to be community property if it was acquired during a marriage. This includes physical properties, finances, and debts. However, some things can never be considered community property. These items include gifts, inheritances, any property owned by a single spouse before the marriage, and any property that was kept separate from the other spouse during the marriage.
A gift can be a bit difficult to define. It merely is any time someone gives you something; no special occasion is needed. However, if you give something in exchange for that object, it will most likely not be considered a gift. Also, it has to be intended for you only, not you and your spouse. If the property is exchanged for, or it was meant to be a gift for both spouses, then it is more than likely community property.
How Spouses Hide Assets
First and foremost, hiding assets for them to be precluded from being considered community property is illegal. Common ways spouses will hide assets are:
- Secretly disposing of property
- Secret bank accounts
- Transferring assets to someone else
- Selling property without your knowledge
An attorney at Holmes, Diggs & Sadler will be able to help you determine whether assets are being hidden from you, and they will get you the amount you deserve.
How Courts Determine What is “Just and Right”
Texas focuses more on fairness rather than equality when dividing up property. Unlike other states, Texas uses community property, which does not divide property 50/50. It means that a judge, looking at the totality of circumstances, will divide the property on what they deem is “just and right.” Because of this, one spouse may receive significantly more than the other. There are several factors judges consider when deeming what property is just and right for each spouse. These factors include, but are not limited to:
- Educational differences between spouses
- Primary child custody
- Ability to get a job
- Financial income of each spouse
The divorce attorneys of Holmes, Diggs & Sadler are here to help answer your questions about the divorce process. Don’t hesitate to reach out to us for help.
The Houston community property lawyers at Holmes, Diggs & Sadler are ready to help devise a legal plan to represent your interests in this community property state. If you are considering divorce, a Houston asset division attorney from Holmes, Diggs & Sadler can help you work towards the outcome you and your family deserve. Contact us today at (713) 802-1777.