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Divorce, debt and property division

Though things like your home, retirement funds and bank accounts may be on top of your mind when you think about divorce and property division, you also need to figure out what to do about your debt.

Most married couples in the Houston area carry some debt. Whether it is a mortgage, auto loan, credit card balance or medical bills, if you are getting divorced, you and your spouse will need to divide up responsibility. Depending on how large your debts are, splitting them up could be as big of a deal as distributing your marital assets.

Dividing assets and debts under Texas divorce law

Texas is a community property state. Most property you and your spouse own is community property, which is subject to 50/50 division. Exceptions to this are gifts specifically made to one spouse, and assets that you or your spouse owned before the marriage. These are separate property that you each get to keep.

When it comes to debt, community property states generally split them equally between divorcing spouses, even the debts taken out in one spouse’s name only.

Of course, this may not be a practical solution for you or your ex. You may be able to negotiate a different solution. For example, if your spouse wants to continue living in the house, they may agree to refinance the mortgage so that they are solely liable for house payments. That way, the bank cannot go after you if your ex ever goes into foreclosure.

Need more information?

Division of debt needs to handled the right way for your divorce to go smoothly and leave you financially stable. For answers to your particular debt concerns, talk to a family law attorney.

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