MARITAL & SEPARATE PROPERTY
During a Divorce, Property is Often at Stake.
You may have heard that Texas is a community property state. This means that during a marriage, items that are purchased are held as being owned by both spouses unless it can be proven that they were understood to be owned separately.
If you are going through a divorce and anticipate questions related to the ownership of property, it is important to contact an Austin divorce attorney. The Law Office of Brandon Bledsoe is standing by to assist you in ensuring that you understand your legal position related to any marital or separate property.
What to Know About Marital and Separate Property in Texas
There are a few things to keep in mind when questions of property arise during a divorce in Texas.
All Property Is Considered Community Property Unless Proven Otherwise
As a community property state, Texas assumes that all property on hand at the end of a marriage is common property owned by both spouses. It is the responsibility of the spouse who believes otherwise to prove that an asset is owned separately.
Property Owned Before a Marriage Can Still Be Community Property
Even if an item was owned before the marriage commenced, unless it can be proven that no funds from the other spouse were contributed towards the property during the marriage, the property will likely be considered to be community property.
Difficulty with this transpires when there is a community bank account and activities cannot be attributed to one specific spouse or the other
If Property Is Claimed to Be Separate, It Must Be Proven
If one spouse is claiming that a specific asset is separate property, they must prove that it was purchased using funds obtained from a gift or inheritance, a personal injury award, or owned before the marriage commenced.
Real Estate Acquired Before Marriage Can Be Separate
Real estate is a different matter. If a spouse can show that they acquired real estate before the marriage began, they just need to present the title as evidence.
However, if the house is refinanced during the marriage or the other spouse’s name is added to the title at any point, it may become community property, in which case the other spouse could be entitled to 50%.
Homes Purchased During a Marriage are Community Property
If a house was purchased during the marriage and only one spouse’s name is on the title, the house is still considered to be owned by both spouses at the time of the marriage dissolution.
Resolving Questions of Marital & Separate Property
Deciding whether an asset is community or separate property can be frustrating, leaving both parties with feelings of anger. If an agreement on property cannot be reached between two parties, it is important to reach out to an Austin divorce lawyer.
Common property ownership disputes arise based on high-value items, such as homes, cars, and businesses. Since Texas is a community property state, it can be challenging to show that these items are separately owned by one spouse. Typically, clear and convincing evidence is required.
At the Law Office of Brandon Bledsoe, our skilled team of Austin marital property lawyers can assist you in understanding Texas law related to property issues when you’re going through a divorce.
Schedule a Consultation with a Skilled Austin Marital Property Attorney Today
When difficult questions come up regarding assets in a divorce, it is imperative to contact a divorce lawyer in Austin, TX. Legal counsel will be able to assist you in identifying the documentation required to show that an asset is separately owned. If separate ownership cannot be proven, we can work together with you and your spouse to resolve disputes.
Schedule an appointment with the Law Office of Brandon Bledsoe today to discuss your marital property concerns.