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Division of property in Texas divorces

Texas couples considering divorce may be interested in how property is divided during the dissolution of a marriage. Texas is a 'community property" state. This means that property acquired between the dates of a marriage's inception and termination is to be divided as equally as possible by the District Court in the event that the spouses and their respective advocates cannot come to an agreement on their own. When couples do manage to reach an agreement on matters of property division, they may sign a Marital Settlement Agreement.

Property, as it pertains to marriage, is generally classified as either marital property or separate property. So long as it was not commingled with marital property, the property that a spouse brings into a marriage or that a spouse inherits is considered separate property during a divorce. Marital property is defined as the property that is acquired during the marriage, including but not limited to real estate, vehicles, bank accounts and stocks. Businesses started during a marriage may be included as marital property. In the event that a company was owned by one spouse prior to a marriage, yet both spouses contributed to its growth during the marriage, the business may be proportionately divided between the parties during a divorce.

Acquisition of property in a state outside of Texas where a spouse held residency may affect property division only if that property would fall into the classification of separate property in Texas. On the contrary, when property acquired out of state would be considered marital property had it been acquired in Texas, that particular property may be divided as marital property.

Property division is an important part of divorce. Many spouses individually retain the counsel and resources of a family law attorney to help ensure that their property rights remain inviolate and that property is divided in a fair and equal manner in accordance with state law.

Source: Divorce Support, "Texas Property Division Factors", September 15, 2014

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