Dallas residents may be aware that marital agreements are common in Texas as well as in other states, and courts consider such agreements to be a useful tool for resolving property division issues amicably. If the court feels that the terms and conditions of a marital agreement are appropriate, it will approve the agreement and the entire property division process will be completed according to that agreement. However, if the court feels that a marital agreement is inadequate, it may order the spouses to prepare a revised agreement, or it may require the spouses to enter into a contested hearing.
In the event that divorce proceedings involve claims for reimbursement, the court will determine the rights of both spouses to such claims and, based on the analysis, the court will use equitable principles to resolve the issue if it finds that the claims are appropriate. Subsequently, it will order a division of the claims after considering the best interests of both spouses and the children. It is also important to remember that Texas courts consider taxation-related factors during property division and therefore, the courts identify assets that may be taxable.
Separating spouses in Texas should also remember that hiding assets at the time of property division is a serious action that will likely be punished if discovered. Therefore, if one spouse is able to prove that the other spouse has hidden assets, the court will determine the value that has been depleted as a result of hiding assets and, based on that, determine the amount of the reconstituted estate. The court will then order a division of the reconstituted estate. In such cases, the court may also award compensation to the wronged spouse in many possible ways.
These are the laws that govern divorce property division in Texas, and they may seem fairly simple on paper. However, when spouses are actually in the middle of divorce proceedings, they often realize that what looked simple on paper was quite complicated in reality. It is in those situations that an experienced family law attorney may be able to help divorcing spouses. If the couple wishes to protect their interests at the time of divorce and ensure fair and equitable property division, sound legal advice may be extremely helpful.
Source: Texas Family Code, “Title 1, Subtitle C, Chapter 7 – Award of Marital Property,” Accessed on April 8, 2015