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How does Texas split property in a divorce?

| Oct 29, 2021 | Property Division |

Each state treats the property of married couples in different ways. Texas is a community property state. That means that when you marry, the two of you become one, so almost everything you earn or acquire from that point forward belongs to you both.

Some assets you gain while married are exempt from this and will be considered separate property. It applies to gifts that one of you received, including if the giver was your spouse. It also applies to anything you inherit. The property you owned before marriage also remains separate, as is anything you ringfenced via a pre or postnuptial agreement.

Distinguishing between separate and community property isn’t always clear

How you use assets can sometimes make it hard to determine whether they are separate or community property. You know they started as separate, but then you mixed them in with community property. You then might have used them as if they were community property. The term for this is commingling, and a court may determine that commingled assets get split as if they were community property. 

Take, for example, a situation in which you receive an inheritance and keep it in a separate personal account. It is clear that it is yours alone and, therefore, separate property. However, if you deposit the money you inherit into your joint account and use it as common money, a court may treat it as community property to be shared. 

Once you have determined which categories each of your assets fit into, you must divide your property equitably. A court will consider several things to reach what they consider an equitable split. So, to get the best outcome, you will need help to explain why you need or merit a specific share of assets.