No matter how long you’ve been married, it’s likely that you and your spouse have experienced an ebb and flow of finances throughout your time together. Perhaps you’ve equally shared in creating a budget and periodically reviewing your finances. On the other hand, you may be like many other Texas married couples where one spouse handles finances and merely informs his or her partner of need-to-know information from time to time.

If you fall under the latter category and have recently filed for divorce, you’ll want to prepare ahead of time for all the financial issues you’ll be resolving in order to achieve a fair settlement. Maybe you don’t know all the particulars about your finances, but now is definitely the time to learn as much as you can before heading to court.

Marital assets are a top priority in divorce

When it comes to property division in divorce, Texas is one of only nine states that operates under community property rules. This means the judge overseeing your case will likely split your marital assets as close to 50/50 as possible between you and your ex. In order to protect your financial interests, it’s critical that there is full disclosure on both sides.

Don’t overlook the impact of debt in your divorce

You might focus on calculating your future finances by considering marital asset division in your divorce. However, it’s important to also take into account the liabilities for which you and your ex will each be responsible. If you have a prenuptial agreement in place, you may have terms regarding the division of debt, such as a college loan that is assigned to one spouse only

It’s helpful to speak to someone who is well-versed in Texas community property regulations before proceedings begin, especially if you’re unsure whether you hold liability for a specific debt.

What about real estate?

Your home as well as any vacation property, timeshares, and commercial or rental properties you own will also be part of property division proceedings in your divorce. Will you sell your house? Is one of you going to keep living in it until then? Who will be paying utility bills or other expenses associated with the property until you close with a new buyer?

Other financial issues in divorce

In addition to real property, assets and liabilities, you may have other financial issues to resolve when you divorce, such as child support or alimony. Every state has its own guidelines regarding such matters. If you and your spouse can’t reach an agreement, the court will decide such issues.

Once the court issues an order, both you and your ex must fully adhere to its terms. You may modify these orders when necessary but not without taking proper legal steps to file a petition and request modification. Many Texas spouses rely on experienced family law attorneys to protect their financial interests in divorce.