Divorce is quite common, affecting some 40% to 50% of marriages in the United States, and is nothing to be ashamed of. The fact of the matter is that if you and your spouse enter into a divorce, you will need to hire an experienced attorney who is able to compassionately navigate the complex legalities associated with divorce.
A divorce attorney can handle a variety of issues associated with a divorce. Some of the most common areas a divorce attorney provides guidance are the division of assets and estates, any custody issues, as well as many other matters that may arise throughout the divorce process.
Texas Divorce Laws
Depending on the state you’re filing for divorce in, the rules for divorce can significantly differ. Texas law requires one of the spouses to have lived in the state continuously for six months before being able to sue for divorce. Additionally, at least one of the spouses must have been a resident of the county in which the divorce is being filed for at least 90 days beforehand.
After a spouse files for divorce in Texas, they must wait a period of 60 days after the petition is filed in order for it to be finalized. However, most cases take around six months to a year to complete due to factors such as negotiating the division of assets, addressing custody and child support disputes, and determining any other items pertinent to the dissolution of the marriage. Since Texas is a community-property state, assets are divided differently than in other places in the United States.
What is a Community Property State?
A community property state means that any property acquired during marriage – including both physical property like real estate or physical possessions as well as income – belongs to both spouses, and must therefore be divided at divorce. Community property law does not apply to separate property, which refers to anything a spouse acquired before entering into marriage. A divorce lawyer can negotiate on behalf of a spouse to determine which property is eligible for division and which is considered separate property. As all property is considered community in Texas until and unless it is specified it is separate, it is extremely important for the financial and mental well being of a spouse to hire an attorney to handle property disputes during this process.
How Can an Attorney Assist with Property Division?
A divorce attorney’s goal when negotiating property division is always to see their client receive the fair and just division of assets they are entitled to, including property acquired before and during a marriage. Texas law requires property between spouses be divided in a manner that is just and right, or in other terms, equitable under the couple’s specific circumstances.
The expertise of a family law attorney truly comes into play when determining equitable property as circumstances such as who is at fault for the deterioration of the marriage, a spouse’s health, a spouse’s earning power, and which spouse has primary custody of children are all considered in the division.
Texas Divorce Attorneys
The attorneys at Terry & Roberts take the time to develop a relationship with each client and truly understand their needs and pain that come with separation. In doing so, both attorney and client are able to establish goals and work toward a successful outcome for all parties. When selecting a family law attorney, it is crucial the attorney is equipped to handle the complex matters of family law, and is able to back up that knowledge with proven experience.
Our Brazoria County attorneys exclusively handle family law, giving our legal team the focus you need to move your divorce proceedings through the system efficiently and effectively. For clear, caring, and practical legal guidance to enable you to do what’s best for your family, contact us today.