Why Property Division In Texas Divorce Isn’t Always Equal

Property Division

When getting divorced in Texas, there is something important to keep in mind: Property division is not always equal. Below are more details about this critical information for Texas divorces. If you have questions about property division in Texas, please talk to the attorneys at Orsinger, Nelson, Downing, & Anderson.

Property Must Be Divided in a Just and Right Manner, Not Equally

Texas law requires community property to be divided in a manner the Court determines to be just and right when considering all of the parties’ circumstances and evidence put before the Court. It is natural to assume that community property will be split equally between the parties, but this is not true. Texas family law courts may order that the assets are divided equally, but the courts could just as likely order them to be unevenly distributed.

Because of how the courts are required to divide community property, the way you present your financial standing and your contributions to the marriage could be crucial. The family court judge may award community property unequally if one of the partners has a disadvantage in any of these areas:

  • Education, job, and earning power
  • Health and age
  • Non-community assets and liabilities.

The judge could also make an unequal property division based on many other factors. For example, if your spouse purposely depleted the community property by selling it, destroying it, giving it away, or in any other manner, the judge may award more property to you.

Retirement Assets

With few exceptions, Texas treats pensions, 401ks, and other retirement plans that accrued during marriage as community property. However, dividing these retirement assets between the parties can be complicated. For example, a pension plan’s administrators do not have to honor the divorce terms to redirect benefits to the other spouse.

So, the spouses ordered to receive these funds need to prepare and submit a Qualified Domestic Relations Order (QDRO) to ensure that retirement funds and benefits are appropriately divided. These orders can be tricky to correctly handle, so you should have your Texas divorce attorney handle it or help you find the right person to prepare them.

If your divorce will involve these types of retirement assets, your attorney should have significant experience in dividing complicated marital assets.

What About Mixed Property?

You may have contributed separate property to buy community property during a marriage. Or maybe you reduced your spouse’s pre-existing liabilities by paying down their debts during the marriage. Some people think that they cannot recover this mixed property in the divorce. However, Texas law allows you to make a reimbursement claim in some of these scenarios.

Contact A Texas Divorce Attorney Today

If you are divorcing and have questions about the division of property in Texas and what you could, will, or should receive following divorce, you should talk to one of our experienced divorce attorneys today.

Orsinger, Nelson, Downing & Anderson’s lawyers can work with you to ensure your separate property and community property rights are respected. Our Texas divorce attorneys serve the cities of Dallas, Frisco, and San Antonio. Please contact our Texas divorce lawyers at (214) 273-2400.