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Property division process can be full of pitfalls

Texas residents who are considering divorce may be unprepared for the complexities involved in the process. One aspect that can be more complicated than anticipated is property division. It is always beneficial to have skilled legal counsel to provide guidance because there are certain matters that require careful and thorough consideration.

While Texas is a community property state in which only assets accumulated during the marriage are to be shared, it may be important to ensure that contributions to a 401(k) that were made before the wedding date should not be included in community property. If one party wishes to keep the family home, the expenses related to taxes, insurance and maintenance must be considered. When liquid assets are divided, it may be sensible to ensure that mutual funds, stocks and bonds are fairly divided -- some of these assets are more favorable that others.

When a Qualified Domestic Relation Order that addresses retirement assets is established, it may be best to insist on having it based on percentages rather than exact dollar amounts. This will accommodate stock market valuations in the time between the drafting of the order and the actual division of property. Under certain circumstances, retirement benefits assets can be accessed by persons in divorce without penalties, and there may also be social security benefits, but these issues are complicated and best explained by legal counsel.

The dynamics of each divorce is different, and with the support of an experienced Texas divorce attorney, the variables of all aspects can be discussed. This will allow every client to make informed decisions about matters that will impact on his or her post-divorce life. An attorney will know what to look out for and ensure that the client is treated fairly throughout the property division proceedings.

Source: divorcedmoms.com, "Dividing Assets During Divorce: 7 Things To Keep In Mind", Mark, July 4, 2016

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