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TX divorce lawyerWhile there are a number of benefits to going into business with other partners, there are also a few drawbacks. For instance, if one partner’s marriage ends, the interests of any other business partners could also be at risk. This is because Texas law requires all divorcing couples to divide their marital property, which includes business assets, equitably. When this happens, the business partner’s ex-spouse could become a shareholder in the business as well, which means that he or she could have a say in how the company operates. Fortunately, there are ways to prevent this type of division, so if you have ownership in a business and are dissolving your marriage, or one of your business partners has filed for divorce, please contact our high asset divorce legal team to learn more about your options.

How to Protect Your Business Interests During Divorce

A business partner’s divorce can have important implications for the ownership interests of other partners and shareholders, so it is important for those who own an interest in a business to take certain steps to prevent disruption. For instance, including a contingency for divorce in a business’ ownership, partnership, or shareholder agreement is one of the best ways to protect a business in the event of divorce. These provisions can require a partner’s ex-spouse to sell a business interest that he or she was awarded in any property division settlements following divorce, back to the company itself. It’s important to note that when drafting this type of provision, the parties should ensure that it contains specific terms and conditions for valuing and purchasing the shares. Failing to take these precautions can have serious repercussions down the road, leading to complicated and expensive litigation, which can put a company at risk.

It’s also a good idea to have the spouses of all partners agree to the divorce contingency in writing before any marital discord actually arises, which can help bolster the enforceability of the contract in the event of divorce. Finally, many business partners are strongly encouraged to enter into a prenuptial agreement before getting married, in which, they can specify that business interests remain separate property, even in the event of divorce. Separate property, unlike marital property, remains in the sole possession of the original owner, unless it becomes commingled with marital assets to a significant degree.

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Posted on in High Asset Divorce

TX high asset divorce lawyerWhen considering divorce and the division of assets that must inevitably follow, it is important for divorcing couples to remember to account for all trusts that they have established, including those created prior to their marriage. Depending on when it was created and the types of funds and assets that it contains, a trust might completely protect one spouse’s property from division during divorce. On the other hand, the contents of a trust might still end up being divided equitably between the spouses. If you or your spouse have a trust in place and have questions about its fate in the event of divorce, you should consider consulting with a high asset divorce lawyer who can advise you.

Irrevocable Trusts

Although Texas courts have not addressed all types of trusts in relation to divorce, a number of judges have indicated that separate irrevocable trusts, when created prior to a marriage, do shield separate property from marital property. As a result, the contents of those trusts are not subject to division upon divorce. In fact, even the income from these types of trusts, even if it was earned during the marriage, will remain separate property and so also won’t be subject to division. However, this is only true if the beneficiary of the trust, whether the spouse him or herself or a third party, will not be considered to have a present possessory right to any of the assets contained in the trust. In the event that the trustor is granted a present possessory right to a portion of the trust, then the income would become marital property and would have to be divided equitably between the parties.

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TX divorce lawyerCouples with significant or diverse assets are often forced to grapple with legal issues that don’t apply in most divorce cases. This can make the divorce process not only more complicated, but also more acrimonious, especially when it comes to valuing the family home, so if you are thinking about filing for divorce and have substantial real estate holdings, you should consider contacting an experienced Round Rock high asset divorce attorney who can ensure that your property is appraised by a qualified expert.

Comparable Sales

For a marital estate to be fairly divided, the value of a couple’s property must be accurately assessed. When it comes to real estate, this usually means that the parties will need to hire an appraiser who can estimate value based on current market conditions and recent sales of comparable properties in the area. When dealing with especially valuable properties, the appraisal process also often includes consideration of additional features of the property in question, which could make it more valuable than other similar properties. Unfortunately, valuing the unique features of a property can be a subjective process. For example, one appraiser may include the value of a swimming pool or a four car garage, but fail to take note of marble countertops or custom kitchen appliances during the appraisal process. For this reason, most couples going through a high asset divorce are encouraged to obtain multiple appraisals to ensure that an accurate number is reached.

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Texas divorce lawyerMany couples who get divorced are able to agree on who will retain what property. However, the more unusual assets and collectibles a couple has, the harder it becomes to appraise them and determine who should retain ownership, especially when an item has an extremely high value or has a special meaning to one of the spouses. While this could include jewelry, as well as antiques, more and more families are investing in artwork, which means that in most cases, if the couple divorces, the property will need to be divided equitably.

Appraisals and proof of purchase are critical to the outcome of these types of conflict, as courts consider property obtained prior to a marriage to be the sole property of the original owner. Even when a piece of art was purchased after divorce, one party could have a strong claim to it if it was given as a gift or was part of an inheritance. Because dividing unusual assets, such as artwork, is so difficult, retaining an experienced high asset divorce attorney is critical to ensuring that all of a couple’s property is fairly and promptly divided upon divorce.

Preparatory Steps

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Posted on in Child Custody

Texas custody attorneyThe approaching holiday season can be a joyous time for family and friends to reunite and celebrate together. Unfortunately, these festive occasions can become contentious when ex-spouses are unable to come to an agreement about holiday visitation with their children. To help avoid this type of stressful situation, you should consider speaking with an experienced complex child custody attorney who can help you find a solution that is in the best interests of all parties.

Court-Ordered Visitation Schedules

When a couple is unable to come to an out-of-court agreement regarding custody matters, courts are required to step in and create a parenting agreement. In these cases, visitation schedules take the form of either standard possession or expanded standard possession arrangements. Under a standard possession order, the holiday visitation schedule will be set in stone, regardless of the distance between the parents’ residences.

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Texas child support attorney, Texas family law attorneyWhether the terms of a child support order were determined by a judge or a couple came to an agreement outside of court, each spouse is legally required to comply with the order. Parental responsibilities are taken seriously in Texas, so failing to pay child support can have serious consequences, including wage garnishment and jail time. In fact, a recently implemented program now prohibits parents who are behind on child support payments from renewing their vehicle registration. Whether you are having trouble meeting your child support obligations or are trying to enforce a child support order, it is critical to have the advice of an experienced complex divorce attorney who can explain your legal options.

Office of the Attorney General

All child support orders must be registered with the state’s Office of the Attorney General (OAG), which oversees and enforces child support obligations across the state. When a person falls behind on payments, the OAG can withhold a percentage of his or her paycheck until the amount has been paid. The OAG is also permitted to collect past due child support by seizing the parent’s liquid or cash assets, including the contents of a bank account. The OAG can also take the following steps:

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b2ap3_thumbnail_college-expenses.jpgIn Texas, parents have certain legal duties towards their children, one of which is to provide them with financial support until they turn 18 years old. Parents can, however, be required to help pay for college tuition in some cases, so if you are going through a divorce and have questions or concerns about providing for your child’s future, it is important to contact an experienced complex child custody attorney who can help ensure that your child’s interests are protected.

Parenting Plans and College Tuition

Generally, non-custodial parents are only required to pay child support for a child until he or she turns 18 years old or graduates from high school, whichever is later, although if a child is older than 18 years old, he or she must be attending high school on a full-time basis to continue receiving support. In some cases, courts will take future college education expenses into account when drafting an initial child support order. However, the law does not prevent parents from negotiating and agreeing to additional child support obligations, which could include responsibility for paying for college tuition, during divorce proceedings.

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Posted on in Child Support

Texas child support laws, Texas child support attorneyIn Texas, parenthood comes with certain legal responsibilities, such as providing for a child’s financial needs. While most child support awards are determined during divorce proceedings, courts can also order payment when a child’s parents are unmarried. If you live in Texas and have questions or concerns about child support, it is important to contact an experienced child support lawyer who will aggressively represent your child’s interests.

Calculating Child Support

Each child support arrangement is based on what the court deems is in each child’s best interest. To simplify the process, however, Texas lawmakers provided a formula to help courts determine the appropriate amount for a child support award. The calculation requires parents to provide proof of their annual gross income, which includes:

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8911 N. Capital of Texas Highway, Building 2, Suite 2105, Austin, TX 78759