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Houston Asset Protection Lawyers

Asset Characterization and Property Division in Divorce

As a community property state, Texas aims for a roughly equal division of marital property between the divorcing spouses. The general rule is that any property acquired by either spouse after the marriage is community property subject to division in divorce, while any property owned by either spouse prior to the marriage is separate property that will not be divided. There are some important exceptions, however, to this general rule.

Divorce attorneys consider disputes as to the community or separate nature of a given asset to be characterization issues. In other words, should particular property be characterized as community or separate? If you need advice about a characterization issue that will make a significant difference in your divorce case, contact the Law Offices of Wendy Wood for a free consultation.

We advise clients about property division problems in Houston and Bryan

Our commitment to detail on property characterization and division issues can give you a better idea of your rights and even increase your share of the marital estate, if we can demonstrate that a particular asset is your separate property or community property despite your spouse's claims to the contrary.

Examples of the kinds of property, expenditures and problems that we can analyze and incorporate in a complex property division package are the following:

  • Disputes concerning gifts, inheritances or personal injury damages, all of which are presumed to be separate property, no matter when acquired
  • The value of a spouse's economic contribution to a family business — uncompensated labor, debt repayment or capital improvements
  • Postmarital expenditures on real estate owned by one spouse prior to marriage
  • Using separate property to pay for improvements to real estate bought during the marriage
  • Distinctions between interest on separate property, which is treated as community property, and the appreciation in value of separate property, which remains separate property
  • Stock options that are granted before marriage but vest during the marriage; or that are granted during the marriage and vest after divorce

In many of these characterization problems, the key factor will be our ability to trace the source of a given asset or improvement to separate funds. Our resourceful approach to property division means that we might be able to prove your position even if your records aren't necessarily complete.

For more information about your rights in a property division dispute, contact Houston asset division attorney Wendy Wood.

"I proudly and efficiently handle all types of family law issues. Please feel free to contact me to discuss your family law questions and how my firm may help you resolve them."
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