Skilled Texas Community Property Division Attorney
Texas is a community property state. This means that most of the property accumulated by you and your spouse during your marriage belongs to both of you, regardless of who earned it. Debts incurred by either party may be awarded to either party or both parties by the court, without affecting creditor’s rights. Property owned prior to your marriage, as well as gifts and inheritances received during your marriage, are separate property and do not have to be divided with your spouse if you divorce.
I’m Gregory Hitt, a divorce lawyer in Austin, Texas. I help people in Travis, Williamson, and Hays counties negotiate property division agreements through trial, settlement or a collaborative law approach.
Community And Separate Property Rights
Community and separate property rights often seem like foreign concepts to people who are going through a divorce. Guidance from an experienced attorney can help you determine which property is subject to division and which isn’t. Here are some examples of community and separate property that are often misunderstood:
- Retirement benefits such as pension plans, individual retirement accounts (IRA) and 401(k) savings accounts accumulated during the marriage are community property and may be divided.
- Appreciation of stock owned prior to divorce is generally separate property. However, cash dividends and earnings paid on the stock during the marriage are community property and subject to division.
- A business may or may not be community property. Generally, if a business has employees and value as an ongoing concern, it can be evaluated by a business evaluation consultant and divided. However, a consulting business that has no value other than the personal good will of the owner is not divisible as community property.
Community property may be divided equally. However, the judge has the ability to order division that is not equal based on a number of factors, such as a fault in the divorce and whether one of the parties was a stay-at-home parent.
How To Contact My Law Office
For an initial consultation about your community and separate property issues, contact attorney Gregory Hitt by calling 512-774-6696. My office is located at S. Capital of Texas Highway (South Loop 360) just north of Westbank Dr. in the Westlake area.