Who Gets the House? Understanding Property Division in Texas

If you live in Texas and are getting divorced, the fate of your property might not look exactly how you had imagined. Texas is considered to be a community property state, which means it has its own rules of what constitutes ownership of land, homes, assets, and even debts. Let’s take an in-depth look at what community property entails, and some of the possible outcomes after a divorce is finalized.

What Is Community Property?

Texas, among other states, views property and assets from a community standpoint. In general, that means anything that was acquired during the marriage belongs to both parties. This applies to income, homes, and even debt. However, when examined more closely, just because both parties have a stake in the property does not mean they get an equal share.

There are quite a few caveats when it comes to community property, most of which have to do with the source of income used when purchasing property, as well as the nature of where the couple’s income goes. Without getting too complicated, it’s best to view Texas law from the general perspective that property will be divided between the two parties. But how exactly is it divided?

The Judge Gets To Decide

Division of property follows the guideline of what is “just and right” in Texas. This means that based on certain criteria, the judge might decide to give one party a disproportionate chunk of property and assets over the other. There are an immense amount of factors at play, but some of the more common ones include:

 

  • Age and health – When children are involved, the judge might find it appropriate to award one person with a significant amount of income if they are sizably younger and therefore would need the resources for the children after the other party dies.
  • Fault – Depending on the cause for the separation, again one party might receive a significantly larger amount of the assets. Issues like adultery or violence are what typically sways the judge one way or another.
  • Square footage – Believe it or not, the size of your home will make a difference in its division. The typical rule of thumb is that the larger the home is, the closer the ruling will be to an equal division of the estate.

 

There are always specific circumstances that make each case different, and factors like pensions, income, lawsuit earnings, or excessive accrual of debt can all have an impact on how property is divided in Texas.

If you are going through a divorce and are concerned about the division of your property, contact The Amsberry Law Firm. We will help you every step of the way to make sure you receive your fair share of property and assets.

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Written by Amsberry Law Firm

Amsberry Law Firm

Mr. Amsberry is board-certified in labor and employment law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization. He is a proven litigator who has argued before the United States 5th Circuit Court of Appeals and earned favorable outcomes in complex, precedent-setting employment and civil rights cases. He served as a reservist assistant judge advocate general in the U.S. Army and is a sought-after lecturer and speaker on a range of legal issues.

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