When a couple makes the difficult decision to divorce, they begin the process of making one shared life into two separate ones. There are many practical considerations to be made, and none of them are easy. Figuring out who will get the custody of any children, how property will be split, as well as any financial support can become stressful, especially when emotions are running high.
The help of an experienced and trustworthy divorce lawyer is one thing that can make this incredibly challenging time easier. If you are considering or already going through a divorce in Texas, the Law Office of Jason Wright is ready to help you through this process.
Divorce Laws in Texas
Texas allows for no-fault divorces, meaning that neither spouse needs to cite evidence to prove that the other spouse caused the divorce. This statute is typically used when a marriage cannot be supported because of “discord or conflict of personalities that destroys the legitimate ends of the marital relationship and prevents any reasonable expectation of reconciliation,” or, in other words, insupportability.
There is no need to cite adultery, abuse, or another reason for a split, and a couple can say that they are no longer able to get along. One spouse can allege fault for the divorce when appropriate, which might affect the distribution of property.
Texas has mandatory waiting periods and residence requirements for divorces. A divorce attorney can advise on what these are and how they might affect your specific situation.
A Guide to Divorce in Austin Infographic
Protect Your Best Interests
Divorces are tough because of the emotions involved and the legal process that must be followed exactly. A simple mistake or oversight can become a major headache. An attorney who handles family law and divorce cases will make sure that your case is handled with the utmost care and that you are not taken advantage of. Your attorney will represent your best interests and rights.
There may be other, less expensive options, such as a do-it-yourself divorce or sharing an attorney with your ex-spouse, which are tempting but risky. Sometimes, saving money upfront creates costly problems and heartache later. With so much on the line, you need experienced legal representation such as that from the Law Office of Jason Wright to fight for you.
Special Divorce Issues
The Law Office of Jason Wright handles a wide variety of divorce cases for clients, some of which are extremely complicated. The specific knowledge of a dedicated divorce lawyer is priceless when it comes to:
Texas requires just and right division of community property in a divorce. Texas is a Community Property state. This means that the presumption under the law is that everything acquired or earned during the marriage is part of the community to be divided in a “just and right” manner. Separate Property is that property that was owned a.) before marriage, b.) inherited during the marriage, or c.) gifted to a spouse during the marriage. If correctly identified, Separate Property is not divided between the parties. Confirming what is and is not community and separate property is sometimes difficult too.
Property division is one of the most contentious issues in a divorce and might be affected by things like:
• The earning capability of one spouse over another
• Fault in the divorce, such as adultery or cruelty
• Bad behavior throughout the divorce process
Property distribution laws are complicated. If a couple cannot come to an agreement on how they would like to split their community property, a judge will do it for them. A divorce lawyer with knowledge of them and experience fighting for settlements in and out of court for clients is a priceless asset.
A common concern for some clients occurs when spouses have different earning potentials or limited career options. It is not easy to reenter the workforce after being out for an extended time, especially if education and training have lapsed. Spousal support, called spousal maintenance, can help remedy this situation.
With a few exceptions, a couple must be married for at least ten years to qualify for spousal maintenance. The courts will consider what each person contributed to the marriage, financially or otherwise, and the length of the union when determining spousal support and property distribution.
Possession and Access of Children
Easily the most emotional aspect of splitting with a spouse is having to share custody of children. The presumption under the Texas Family Code is that one parent has a Standard Possession Schedule.
Complex and High Net Worth Divorces
Couples with a high net worth make special considerations when they decide to divorce. Assets and property must be cataloged and valued accurately so they can be split between the spouses in a “just and right” manner. In complex divorce cases, special appraisers and finance experts may need to be called in to help accomplish this.
It can become difficult to determine what is community property and what is separate property. Pre and postnuptial agreements, trusts, real estate, investment properties, and retirement accounts can all be involved with complex cases and can make the process much more complicated. A divorce attorney with experience helping high net worth couples is a must to protect your rights and ensure just settlement.
Pre and Postnuptial Agreements
Some people’s financial circumstances warrant the practical need for a pre or postnuptial agreement to protect money and assets. One of the most common reasons for this is when wealth has been passed down through a family from generation to generation, but there are certainly other situations that create this need too. Pre and postnuptial agreements can include anything in Texas, including:
• What property will remain separate
• What property will be shared
• Treatment of future gifts and inheritances
• Duration and amount of spousal support
• How death benefits will be distributed should a spouse die
• Division of debts
• Protection of property and assets that a spouse intends to pass on to children from an earlier relationship
In addition to following the terms of pre and postnuptial agreements during a divorce, the Law Office of Jason Wright can handle the creation of these legal documents before or during a marriage. We have successfully helped couples develop legally sound and safe plans while also making them feel comfortable with the process and not like it is planning for their ultimate divorce.
Dissolution of Same-Sex Marriages
In 2015, the United States Supreme Court ruling of Obergefell v. Hodges granted same-sex couples the same rights to marry — and divorce — as heterosexual couples in every state of the United States. Same-sex couples are entitled to all the divorce protections afforded to everyone else but still face challenges that heterosexual couples do not, especially when they share children.
A law firm that is sensitive to these issues and familiar with the intricacies of LGBT divorce and child custody concerns is an absolute must for a same-sex couple that has decided to end their marriage.
A Texas Divorce Lawyer on Your Side
If a divorce is potentially in your future, it can be hard to know where or how to start. Emotions and tensions are running high, and there is so much on the line.
Representation matters. When you find a Texas divorce lawyer you can trust, with a track record to back up any claims they make, you will understand how important this relationship will become.
Your attorney will make sure you understand the laws and your rights under them. They will avoid costly mistakes made by inexperience. Perhaps most importantly, they will protect your best interests and help you and your family navigate a stressful and difficult situation.
If you are going through a divorce without the help of an attorney, are thinking about getting a divorce but have questions before making your decision or are planning to get divorced and are unsure of where to start, contact the caring and responsive team at the Law Office of Jason Wright. We are ready to help you resolve your divorce efficiently and with your best interests at heart.
Contact the Law Office of Jason Wright for a consultation by calling 512-884-1221 or submit the form below. We are committed to zealously working to find the solution that is best for you and your family.