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Houston Divorce Law Blog

Don't let money be used as a weapon in your divorce

For most people the decision to divorce is not one that is made overnight. It usually follows months, and maybe even years, of trying to make the relationship with one’s spouse work, sometimes even leading to a separation. During that period of time while working for the best, it may be a good idea to at the same time, plan for the worst.

For many who are divorcing the most important matter to be addressed is the way in which the assets of the marriage will be distributed. Because of this, during a separation it is important to gather information regarding exactly what your family’s assets are. Depending on the circumstances this may not be as easy as one might assume. For example, a spouse might try to hide assets in anticipation of the marriage ending. In situations such as these working with a forensic accountant can be beneficial.

How a prenuptial agreement might benefit your relationship

When couples are in love and looking to the future it is easy to focus only on living happily ever after. As all too many individuals who reside in the Houston, Texas, area are aware however, things do not always work this way. Not all marriages make it and people are left to address various issues in the course of a divorce. In many cases the division of assets and debts is the most contentious part. 

In divorce involving business, determination of goodwill is vital

The complexity of a divorce will vary from couple to couple. A factor that could make it more complicated is when a business is involved. If in the state of Texas, if that business is deemed to be marital property, it will be added to the assets set to be divided. This will likely require a valuation of the business.

In addition to a business’ tangible assets, its goodwill will also need to be valued. Essentially the value of the business once the tangible assets have been extracted, in many situations the courts in Texas will divide this goodwill into two parts. The first is personal good will and the other enterprise goodwill. Generally, enterprise goodwill is something that can be sold and is separate from the owner of the business.

The benefits of collaborative divorce

Contrary to what some people believe not all divorces are overly contentious battles where the main object of each side is to make things as difficult as possible for the other. For couples interested in ending their marriage in a less stressful way, without going to court, collaborative divorce may be a good fit.

There are other benefits to collaborative divorce besides a reduction in stress. Some people are interesting in this process because it usually take less time from start to finish and is less expensive than divorcing the traditional way. It also allows couples to be creative in the settlement agreement they reach.

When dividing assets in divorce look ahead to the future

The first thing that likely comes to mind for many individuals who are divorcing is the division of assets. In particular, how much cash each individual walks away from the split with. While there are situations in which the amount of cash or physical assets someone ends up with is indicative of a good settlement, this is not always the case.

One situation, in which someone may think that he or she is getting a good settlement but in reality is not, is when a person insists on keeping the family home. While this may fulfill an emotional need, in the long-term it could be devastating financially as for some, mortgage payments and expenses related to its upkeep could be hard to stay on top of. The same can be said of other physical assets which may be worth a lot both sentimentally as well as monetarily, but do nothing to help produce income and are difficult to sell.

Wealthy women should consider prenup before marriage

Divorce can be a traumatizing event that may lead some individuals to forego the union of marriage in the future. Some people move beyond that however and after meeting the right person, decide to remarry. After experiencing the difficulties surrounding divorce firsthand, it is possible that they will take steps to protect themselves should another divorce occur. This may be accomplished at least in part, through the use of a prenuptial agreement.

Thinking about divorcing? Prepare by addressing debt.

For most Houston, Texas, area divorcing couples the division of assets is one of the most important matters to address. It isn’t only assets that need to be split however. Debt acquired during the course of the marriage must be addressed as well.

In most cases divorcing couples want to distance themselves as much as possible from their estranged spouse. Accordingly, it is always best to try to pay off any debt accrued on a joint account before filing for, or in the course of, a divorce. This may be accomplished using the proceeds from the sale of a house or from savings accounts.

Already in use in Texas, collaborative divorce gains traction

All individuals reading this post are likely aware that the legal process of ending a marriage is a divorce. When it comes to how this process will occur however, depends on the couple and their goals. While there are some divorcing couples who focus only on getting the best possible settlement, others are more concerned with making the process as good as possible for all parties involved, particularly children if they are a part of the equation. For these individuals, collaborative divorce may be worth exploring. 

When dividing assets in divorce don't forget retirement funds

From an early age, many people throughout the Houston, Texas, area start saving for retirement. This activity often starts before someone is married and the savings may grow to a large amount during the course of the marriage. While some people dream about how they will use that money, it is unlikely that during the years when one's retirement fund is growing that most are thinking about the way in which that account could be impacted if the marriage ends. Nonetheless this is happening more and more often.

Financial matters to keep in mind when marriage ends

There are many financial matters that a person who is in the process of divorcing needs to keep in mind. Making sure one’s financial state is in a good place at the start of a divorce is the first step toward starting the next chapter of one’s life in the best possible financial shape.

The first thing to do is make sure that you have documents providing information on the assets you had with your spouse. In pulling this information together, it is important to look beyond the obvious to assets that your spouse might try to hide. A good place to get information is from income tax returns. This is because most people are afraid of getting in trouble for lying on the documents so they accurately provide the requested information.

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