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San Antonio Family Law Blog

Common mistakes may prevent successful divorce proceeding

A marital breakup in Texas can impact multiple parties -- not just the husband and wife going through it. For instance, the scars left behind after a divorce may end up being passed down to future generations. Feelings of shame, blame, anger and despair often surround divorce proceedings, but a few tips may help those going through divorce to avoid making mistakes they will regret down the road.

First, having rational expectations regarding the divorce outcome, costs and timing is critical. Typically, emotions run high during divorce proceedings, so the everyday decision-making and mindsets of the spouses involved in them are altered. Unfortunately, if spouses make decisions based on how they feel and not necessarily on what makes sense from a logical standpoint, they can make major mistakes.

Valuing business during divorce is critical to asset division

Figuring out how much a business is worth can be an especially stressful process for a complex venture. Adding divorce to the mix only complicates the valuation process. However, for those going through divorce in Texas, reaching out to a Certified Public Accountant with valuation experience may be helpful.

Some accountants hold accreditation in the area of business valuation from recognized organizations that offer certifications. However, just one percent of accountants fall into this category. To acquire such a designation, an account must go through specialized training and complete the relevant continuing education.

Litigation, collaborative divorce options in Texas

Ending an unfulfilling marriage can be a freeing feeling, but it can also be a stressful experience. After all, it is not easy untangling two financially and emotionally intertwined lives. A couple of options exist for tackling the divorce process in Texas, including litigation and collaborative divorce.

Litigation essentially involves two spouses who battle out in court how they will split their assets and tackle other divorce issues. In this situation, a judge makes the final decisions for the couple regarding spousal support, child custody and their finances, for example. The litigation option is unavoidable for two spouses who do not trust each other and need a judge to basically call the shots for them.

Divorce may cause credit score to drop in multiple ways

Dealing with the emotions of a marital split-up can understandably be challenging, but so can dealing with the financial aspect of it. The divorce process can have an impact not only on a Texas resident's net worth but also on his or her credit score. Here are a few ways the dissolution of a marriage can affect one's credit score.

If two spouses decided to get divorced and separate their accounts, the lower-earning spouse may end up with lower credit limits on his or her cards. This is because credit card companies have the right to decrease these limits if they discover that salary changes have occurred in the card owners. Unfortunately, this can not only impact the spouse's credit score but also cause him or her to max out his or her credit limit quickly.

Refinancing offers benefits after divorce

For many married couples, the marital home is their biggest asset. Thus, not paying sufficient attention to this asset during a divorce proceeding can be a major mistake. Refinancing following divorce in Texas may be beneficial for a couple of reasons.

First, refinancing can help to protect the credit of the spouse who has chosen to give up the home and take a share of the home's equity instead. This is important because in the lender's eyes, the spouse who no longer lives in the home is still liable for the mortgage unless the home is sold, the mortgage is paid off or the home is refinanced in the other spouse's name. Coming off of a home's title is not the same as coming off of its mortgage.

Divorce has impact on retirement planning

The process of getting divorced in Texas can be difficult for both emotional and financial reasons. The financial side of divorce may especially be intimidating for those who are about to enter their retirement years. However, some tips may help them to protect their best interests when dealing with divorce-related financial matters that impact their golden years.

First, reviewing options for claiming Social Security is important when navigating a late-in-life divorce. For divorced spouses, the benefits received from Social Security are not considered assets that can be divided in divorce court. Instead, for those who have been married for at least 10 years and who are at least 62 years old, they can collect benefits based on the records of the former spouse, even after getting divorced.

Divorce dispute may involve family home

The process of dissolving a marriage is hardly a pretty one. This is especially the case for spouses who cannot find common ground in areas such as asset division. However, the proper information may help to reduce anxiety as well as expedite the divorce process in Texas.

One of the biggest sources of conflict during divorce is the family home. The wife is usually the one who wishes to stay in the home due to her emotional connection to it. For instance, the children were raised there, or it is in a strong school zone. However, keeping up with the mortgage payments on one's own may be a challenge, especially if the other spouse was the primary or sole breadwinner.

Specific steps may help to make divorce process more manageable

Although life may feel effortless at the beginning of a romance, it can quickly become a challenging ordeal if two spouses decide to finally split up due to irreconcilable differences. Tempers can easily run high, particularly if the two spouses cannot see eye to eye on certain divorce matters. A few tips might help them to navigate the divorce process easily in Texas.

First, disclosing assets early on is important. In some divorce cases, spouses are tempted to hide their assets in an effort to keep the other party from enjoying them following the divorce. The problem with this is that if the court later learns that not all property was disclosed during the divorce proceeding, it can toss the deceptively created divorce decree, making it essentially null and void. The spouses will then have to return to court to handle their affairs all over again -- and this can occur even years after they thought that everything had been finalized.

Evaluating practice can be tricky for doctors during divorce

For highly paid professionals in Texas who own their own businesses, such as doctors, who are going through the dissolution of a marriage, the most important matter to consider is their practices' value. Many doctors in particular belong to group practices or partnerships today. A few tips may help them to protect their best interests when dealing with property division during divorce.

Several factors are important to consider when dealing with a high-value asset such as a medical practice. For instance, how the practice was funded, whether it was established during or before the owner's marriage, and whether stock was issued to participants are all essential questions to ask. The answers to these questions affect the practice's value.

Entrepreneurship can complicate divorce

For entrepreneurs in Texas who are married, their businesses may very well be their largest assets. If an entrepreneur's spouse desires a piece of his or her business in their divorce settlement, being sharp-eyed regarding its future growth potential and value is critical. Likewise, being cognizant of the business' debts or liabilities is important.

Obtaining a valuation of the business is an essential step in property division during a divorce proceeding. A forensic accountant may be necessary to pinpoint missing financial information before an appraiser provides a final valuation. Then, once an appraiser determines a business' value, the assets can be divided. However, figuring out whether to sell the business or split the business up can be complicated.

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