Property Division

Southlake Property Division Attorney

Dividing Assets in Southlake, TX

Divorce can be one of the most stressful events in your life, and it can be even more stressful if you and your spouse are not on the same page when it comes to dividing assets. At the Law Office of Mark M. Childress, P.C., we understand how important your family's financial future is, and we will work with you to create a fair property division agreement.

Call our Southlake office at (817) 497-8148 or complete our online contact form to discuss your situation with our legal team.

Understanding Property Division in Texas

In Texas, property division follows the community property system, which means that assets and debts acquired during the course of the marriage are generally considered community property and are subject to a just and right division between both spouses.

Common types of assets involved in a divorce include:

  • Real estate (such as the family home)
  • Vehicles
  • Bank accounts
  • Investments
  • Retirement accounts (like 401(k)s and pensions)
  • Businesses started during the marriage

On the other hand, property that either spouse owned before the marriage or acquired during the marriage through inheritance, gift, or personal injury settlement is considered separate property. This property remains the sole possession of the individual spouse and is not subject to division during divorce.

Texas is a "community property" state, but it's essential to note that the division of assets may not always be an exact 50-50 split. Instead, the court aims to achieve a fair and just division, considering factors such as the length of the marriage, each spouse's earning capacity, age, health, and other relevant circumstances.

In addition to assets, marital debts are also subject to division. Debts acquired during the marriage, such as mortgages, credit card debts, and loans, will be distributed between the spouses according to the same principles of community property laws.

When Does Separate Property Become Community Property?

In Texas, separate property can sometimes become community property through a process known as "comingling" or by a legal concept called "transmutation." This occurs when there is mixing or intermingling of separate property with community property, thereby altering its character from separate to community. Here are some examples of when separate property might become community property in Texas:

  • Commingling of Funds: If funds from a separate bank account owned by one spouse are deposited into a joint account shared by both spouses, those funds may lose their separate property status and become community property. For example, if one spouse inherits a sum of money and then deposits it into a joint savings account with their spouse, those funds could potentially be considered community property.
  • Improvements to Separate Property: If one spouse uses funds from a joint account or marital income to improve a piece of property that was originally separate property, such as renovating a house owned before the marriage, the increased value due to those improvements might be considered community property.
  • Transmutation through Agreement: Sometimes, separate property can become community property through a written agreement or actions that demonstrate an intent to change its character. For instance, if a spouse with separate property titles a home in both spouses' names, this could be seen as an intention to convert the property into community property.
  • Mingling of Assets: When assets are mixed to the point where it is difficult to trace their origins, they may be considered community property. For example, if funds from a separate property business are used to pay household expenses or joint debts over an extended period, those funds might lose their separate character.
  • Intentional Gifting: If one spouse intends to gift their separate property to the community, it can become community property. For instance, if a spouse gives their separate property to the other spouse with the clear intent that it be shared jointly, it could be considered community property.

Mediation vs. Litigation

Spouses may choose to work out their property division through mediation, where they can negotiate and come to an agreement with the help of a neutral mediator. This can be less time-consuming and costly than going through a court trial.

If spouses cannot agree on property division, the court will make the decisions for them. In such cases, it's essential to consult with a family law attorney to protect your interests and ensure a fair outcome.

Is My Spouse Hiding Assets?

Discovering that a spouse is hiding assets can be a challenging and emotionally distressing situation, particularly during a divorce. Here are some common signs that your spouse may be hiding assets:

  • Unexplained Financial Discrepancies: If you notice unexplained discrepancies between your spouse's reported income and their lifestyle, it could be a sign that they are hiding assets or sources of income.
  • Changes in Spending Patterns: Sudden changes in your spouse's spending habits, such as extravagant purchases or unexplained withdrawals of large sums of money, may indicate attempts to conceal assets.
  • Complex Financial Transactions: Your spouse may engage in complex financial transactions to obscure the ownership or value of assets. This could include transferring assets between accounts, creating shell companies, or making loans to friends or family members that are later repaid.
  • Secrecy Regarding Financial Matters: If your spouse becomes increasingly secretive about financial matters, such as refusing to share bank statements or tax returns, it may be a red flag that they are hiding assets.
  • Hiding Documents: Your spouse may hide or withhold financial documents, such as bank statements, tax returns, or property deeds, to prevent you from discovering the true extent of their assets.
  • Unexplained Debt: Your spouse may incur unexplained debts or liabilities in an attempt to deplete marital assets or obscure their true financial position.
  • Offshore Accounts or Investments: Your spouse may have offshore accounts or investments in jurisdictions with strict bank secrecy laws to conceal assets from scrutiny.
  • Overpaying Taxes or Debts: Your spouse may overpay taxes or debts in an attempt to create a false financial picture or to have funds refunded after the divorce is finalized.
  • Hiding Assets in Business Entities: If your spouse owns a business, they may manipulate business finances or undervalue business assets to minimize their apparent worth.
  • Lack of Transparency in Financial Discussions: Your spouse may avoid discussions about finances or become defensive when questioned about financial matters, which could indicate attempts to hide assets.

We Will Help You Through Every Step of the Process

Our Southlake property division attorney will work with you every step of the way, from the initial property inventory to the final property settlement. We will help you protect your rights, your property, and your interests throughout the property division process.

Here's why you need our legal services:

  • Expertise in Texas Property Law: Our team of lawyers is well-versed in the intricacies of Texas property law. We stay up-to-date with any changes in relevant legislation, ensuring that your case is handled according to the most current legal standards.
  • Negotiation Skills: Our lawyers are adept at negotiating property division settlements. We will work tirelessly to reach a favorable agreement outside of court, saving you time, money, and emotional stress.
  • Courtroom Experience: If a fair settlement cannot be reached through negotiation, our lawyers are experienced litigators who will vigorously represent your interests in court. We will advocate on your behalf to secure the best possible outcome in the property division process.
  • Thorough Asset Valuation: Accurately valuing assets and debts is crucial in property division cases. Our team will work with financial experts, appraisers, and accountants to ensure that all assets are properly evaluated, leaving no room for undervaluation or hidden assets.
  • Protecting Your Rights: Our primary goal is to protect your rights and ensure that you receive your fair share of the community property. We will safeguard your interests throughout the entire process, from the initial consultation to the final settlement or court ruling.

Whether you and your spouse can agree on a property division or you need a property division attorney to represent your interests, we can help you. Contact us today at (817) 497-8148 to let our team protect your rights from start to finish.

The Opinions That Matter Most

  • My questions were heard and answered without having to ask twice.

    “Value a capable team with experienced staff. For the past 9 months, the folks at the Law Offices of Mark Childress handled my case with class and empathy. My questions were heard and answered without having to ask twice. I felt like I was kept in the loop and always briefed properly. As I move forward with other ventures I wouldn't be surprised if we crossed paths again. And hats off to Konner, THANK YOU!”

  • Mark was there to answer every question, every phone call and did it in a way that I felt as if I were his only client.

    “I needed an attorney who would stand up for me and my child during a very hard time. Mark was there to answer every question, every phone call and did it in a way that I felt as if I were his only client. He was very knowledgeable not only about the law but about the opposing attorney and the judge. He prepared me well and we won our case. I would recommend Mark Childress to anyone who is fighting for custody or in need of child support.”

  • I highly recommend him and his staff. They are courteous, prompt and they care.

    “I called in inquiring about a divorce and how it all happens. I had 2 people call me back within an hour and in an hour maybe 2 I was talking with the lawyer. I highly recommend him and his staff. They are courteous, prompt and they care. Divorce is the hardest thing we will go through minus losing a kid and his team will be retained. He even called me back himself the next day to see how I was. Great service.”

  • This guy is amazing. In a matter of minutes, he accomplished what no other attorney could in 6 years.

    “This guy is amazing. In a matter of minutes, he accomplished what no other attorney could in 6 years. He had my case figured out in 1short conversation and had what he called "a convoluted mess" fixed. I'm pretty sure my ex felt like he'd been hit by a bus. My family is finally in tact and everyone is finally happy.”

Why Choose Us For Your Family Matters?
  • Direct Access To Your Attorney

    Our Attorneys personally handle each case themselves. You will have direct access to your attorney to be able to get the answers that you need. 

  • Transparency
    Honesty and transparency are critical in building trust with your attorney. You will always know what is going on with your case every step of the way.
  • Team Oriented

    At our firm you're not just a case number, our staff will always know the status of your case and help to make your situation more manageable.

  • Personalized Approach
    Our team understands that no two cases are the same. Your strategy will be tailored specifically to you and your family's goals.