Laura Dale & Associates, P.C.
Se Habla Español Nous Parlons Français
Call 713-574-7952 or 888-572-6059
888-572-6059

Keeping separate property separate in marriage, P.1

Prenuptial agreements can be an invaluable tool for protecting assets in divorce. Couples who don’t have such an agreement don’t have as much control over how their assets will be divided, and the outcome in terms of property division is more uncertain.

While there are plenty of reasons for certain couples to strike a prenuptial agreement, it just doesn’t always happen in cases where it would be highly recommended. It could be lack of foresight, fear that striking a prenuptial agreement would taint the marriage, or an inability to secure the cooperation of one’s fiancé. Whatever the reason, couples who enter marriage without the protection of a prenuptial agreement can still take steps to protect their assets from potential divorce

The general way to protect one’s assets from divorce without a prenuptial agreement is to keep separate property separate. The way a couple goes about doing this depends on the state in which they live. Actually, what really matters should be the state where a couple gets divorced, but this isn’t exactly something a couple would ordinarily plan out. Community property, such as Texas, states have a different way of categorizing assets than equitable distribution states.

Under Texas law, separate property is defined as property owned or claimed by a spouse prior to marriage, property acquired during the marriage by inheritance, and proceeds for personal injuries sustained during the marriage minus recovery for loss of earning capacity. Community property is defined as all non-separate property acquired by either spouse during the marriage.

In Texas, courts divide a marital estate in a way determined to be “just and right” under the circumstances. Courts presume that property possessed by either spouse at the time divorce is filed is community property and a spouse must present clear and convincing evidence to prove otherwise, a higher burden than the ordinary civil standard of preponderance of the evidence. In order to prevent separate property from being divided in divorce, then, a spouse has to make sure it is very clearly separate property.

In our next post, we’ll look at some specific suggestions for keeping separate property separate in marriage.

Source: Texas Family Code Title 1, Sec. 3, Sec. 7

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information

Client Testimonials

  1. Laura Dale the best Family Law attorney I have ever met... Posted by John...Listens, takes your calls, tells you the truth (even when it may not be what you want to hear)... Read More

  2. The Best...Posted by a Child Custody client... Laura Dale handled my international child custody and divorce matter. I am an attorney in Houston and was referred to her... Read More

  3. A Meticulous, Knowledgeable, Attorney with Heart...Posted by a Child Custody client... Laura was not the first attorney that my husband and I interviewed for an extremely complex... Read More

  4. Top Notch, Hands Down - The Best...Posted by Tammi, a Child Custody client... Laura Dale has been absolutely the best attorney I could have found for my difficult child custody... Read More

Contact Our Experienced Team Today | Se habla español | Nous parlons français

Due to the experience our lawyers have in many specialized areas, you can rely on us to put together the right team to handle your case, even if it centers on complex issues such as international family law, business valuation or bankruptcy. Contact us today to make an appointment to discuss your needs with a knowledgeable lawyer.

Laura Dale & Associates, P.C.
1800 Saint James Pl.
Suite 620
Houston, TX 77056

Toll Free: 888-572-6059
Phone: 713-574-7952
Fax: 713-600-1718
Houston Office Location

Review Us