Divorce proceedings are often complicated and far from cut and dry. For spouses entering into the settlement phase of their divorce, it’s important to understand what assets are included in property division, especially those that are often forgotten.
How Is Property Divided During Divorce?
In Texas, income earned and property acquired by either spouse during a marriage is called community property. This means that this income or property belongs to both spouses equally, so it must be split equally during a divorce. Debts are also considered to be community debts and must be divided evenly.
According to Texas law, however, if there is a reason why assets should be distributed differently, a court can order a different result. If a spouse wishes to deem any asset as separate, the spouse must first prove with evidence that the asset is their property. Separate property includes physical items, real estate, or income that belonged to a spouse prior to marriage and was kept separate during the marriage. A common example is an inheritance.
Don’t Forget These Marital Assets During Divorce
In the best interest of both parties, it’s important that all assets are considered. Some marital assets are often forgotten during divorce proceedings including:
- Collections: Private collections such as fine art and even simple figurines are considered marital property if collected during the marriage. Although one party could be responsible for the collection, the net worth is a valuable asset to the divorce. However, both parties might agree to leave collections to the responsible party.
- Retirement accounts: Retirement accounts are extremely valuable assets for both parties. These funds may be divided, however, will require documentation to avoid tax penalties. Spouses wishing to divide these accounts should consult with an attorney prior to pulling their retirement account early.
- Various benefits from programs and credit cards: Rewards and perks given to spouses through credit cards and other programs are considered marital property. Airline miles, trips and bonuses should be considered during a divorce settlement to benefit both parties.
Call an Attorney to Help With Property Division
Property division is complicated and requires the knowledge only an experienced attorney can give. It’s in the best interest of both parties for each to reach out for legal consultation prior to making any decisions. To learn more about property division and marital assets, reach out to us!