March 27, 2015 | Share
What Real Estate Can You Keep in a Texas Divorce?
Most people acquire real estate through hard work and focus — and if you own a home, you’re probably attached to it emotionally, too. It is stressful to think about splitting up real estate in a divorce, but a Collin County divorce attorney like J. Ryan Nordhaus can help you.
At Nordhaus Walpole PLLC, we understand that this is a trying time for you. Our divorce attorneys can guide you through gathering evidence that shows a judge who deserves all or part of the real estate you once shared with your spouse and help you understand what Texas law provides for each spouse.
Understanding Real Estate and Community Property in Texas
The real estate you own is considered either community property or separate property during your divorce proceedings. If a judge declares your property is separate, then you get to keep it. If a judge declares it to be community property, it will be divided between you and your spouse.
Let’s say you bought a home in Collin County or elsewhere in Texas before your marriage. That real estate is considered separate property. Any real estate a spouse acquires through inheritance or a gift is also likely to remain separate property, depending on the terms of the deceased’s estate plan.
But if you bought a home together with your spouse before or during your marriage, that real estate is likely to be considered community property.
The situation becomes more complex if you bought a home before your marriage and then rented it during your marriage. The real estate is likely to still be yours, but the rental income is likely to be considered community property.
These complexities are why it is so important to go over everything about how you or your spouse acquired each piece of real estate.
Texas case law provides for various situations that may not be predictable on the surface, too — especially if you or your spouse own land with mineral rights. Our attorneys are able to advise specifically for your situation.
Can You Keep Real Estate if It’s Community Property?
Texas family law provides for equitable distribution of community property in a divorce. That means that if you and your spouse can’t come to an agreement without a judge, the judge will determine who gets what.
Factors include who has how much earning power, who has custody, why the marriage is dissolving, the health of each spouse and various other individual traits about you, your spouse and the nature of the marriage.
There may be unconsidered solutions that our divorce attorneys can help you see. Depending on the nature of your divorce, we can craft strategies and solutions that may work in mediation or other private settlements. If the case requires a judge, he or she divides the property based on a standard of what is “just and right” — and sometimes the outcome isn’t what either spouse wants.
Talk to us about your real estate and let us know what you hope for an outcome. Our attorneys are always available to help you.
Categories: Family Law & Divorce