It’s not unusual in a divorce for one spouse to realize they know little about the finances. More often it’s a wife. Sometimes, she manages household finances and pays bills, but the other spouse knows about the investments, retirements and business interests. Sometimes, one spouse manages all household finances, including paying bills, and the other knows nothing about income, expenses, retirement or investments.

Preparing for a Divorce

Going through a divorce can be both a financially and emotionally stressful process. Proper planning may help to minimize some of the stress involved and allow you to maintain some control during an uncertain and difficult life event.

Dealing with a business can be the most difficult part of property division in divorce. It’s not a good idea for former spouses to be in business together; most businesses cannot be split and divided; and putting a value on a business may be expensive and often speculative.

When Divorce is Unexpected

Some painful life events are expected. Deep down, we expect to bury our parents. Everyone knows their spouse might be the first to pass on. Some, as their marriage remains in trouble, think about divorce. Others are shocked when their spouse decides to divorce. Part of what makes divorce so painful is that it’s unexpected, even at the deepest level. People expect to remain married for life.

How are assets divided in a divorce? Two people who went into a marriage thinking in terms of forever only to confront a divorce must face this question while dealing with the emotional trauma. In Texas the quick answer is: In a ‘just and right division.’ When the courts of appeal are asked to clarify that, they tell us it means ‘fair and equitable.’

One effect of the 2017 Federal tax overhaul is that alimony is no longer tax deductible after December 31, 2018. Under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, Pub. L. No. 115-97, § 11051(c), sections 62(a)(10), 71 and 215 of the Internal Revenue Code were not included in the new law.

The interplay between shared credit cards and financial liability is complex, and much more so when working through a divorce. Prenuptial and postnuptial agreements attempt to straighten out the asset and debt details upfront, but when such an agreement is not in place, it will take an expert to sort everything out. In some cases, the idea of facing financial hardship or ruinous credit can compel someone to stay in a marriage they would otherwise seek to dissolve.

Legal Marriage Annulment A legal annulment means a marriage was not valid from the beginning. It is different from a religious annulment. A legally divorced person might get a religious annulment. The religious annulment has no effect on the divorce or on the ability to get a legal annulment.

Geographical Areas Served:

Kingwood, Huffman, Lake Houston, Atascocita, Humble, Oakhurst, Walden, Walden Woods, Walden on Lake Houston, East FM 1960, Fall Creek, Eagle Springs, Lakeshore, Silverlake, Redstone, Summerwood, Eagle Lake, West Lake Houston Parkway, The Heights, Greater Heights, Houston Heights, Downtown Houston, Memorial, Allen Parkway, Montrose, Houston Neartown, Houston Midtown and East Montgomery County.

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