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San Antonio Divorce Law Blog

Does your marriage have these risk factors?

Just as there is no single formula for a successful marriage, so too is there no single reason why marriages don't work out. Every spouse comes to marriage with unique backgrounds and experiences that provide him or her with varying abilities to cope with stressful situations, temptations and personality conflicts. Those spouses who are willing to adapt and adjust may be more successful than those who are more set in their ways.

Nevertheless, analysts and sociologists continue to try to nail down the reasons why some marriages last a lifetime and others do not. With laws in Texas and other states allowing for more no-fault divorces, it is not always necessary to articulate the reasons why marriages break up. However, it may be important to recognize some of the factors that can put a marriage at a greater risk of divorce.

Texas divorce: Is your spouse hiding assets?

Deciding to file a petition in a Texas court to end a marriage typically brings about many life changes, as well as emotional upheaval. Regardless of what events transpired or what unresolved issues led to your decision, one of your main goals may be to settle your divorce in as swift, economically feasible and amicable a fashion as possible.

As a parent, you especially want to navigate the divorce process in a way that enables your children to cope with the situation in a healthy manner. You want to support them as they (and you) adapt to a new lifestyle. You may also realize that, to do so, you need to be able to financially provide for your children's needs. If your spouse is more concerned with gaining the upper hand in property division proceedings than achieving a fair settlement, it can be a serious and stressful problem.

Child custody orders: Things to know about modification

When you decided to file for divorce in a Texas court, you wanted to make sure that your children's best interests were the central focus of all proceedings. You understood that your decision was going to affect their lives, but you wanted to make the transition as painlessly as possible. 

You also understood that once the judge overseeing your case issued a child custody order, you and your ex would both have an obligation to adhere to the terms. In fact, the only way to change the game plan would be to seek modification of the order, and even then, you'd still be bound to adhere to the existing terms unless and until the court granted a modification request.

How is property split when going through a divorce in Texas?

When working through the divorce process, it is not uncommon for spouses to argue about assets. The goal, for most, is to walk away with at least 50% of the shared assets, but that does not happen in every case, despite Texas being a community property state. Several factors are taken into consideration when working toward a property division settlement, which will affect the final outcome.

What does community property mean? Do all couples have to abide by community property laws? Does a judge get the final say on the matter?

You don't have to give up your marital home

Life gets complicated when you go through a divorce. From figuring out finances to dealing with child custody, you probably feel overwhelmed. One of the last things you may feel like doing is moving, so staying in the marital home is important to you. Like a lot of mothers, you might also be thinking about providing a sense of stability for your children. The good news is that keeping your house is probably easier than you think.

Compared to the last decade or so, Texas real estate prices are fairly reasonable. This makes it much easier to do things like paying the mortgage and keeping up with the cost of maintenance on a single income. However, there are some important steps you will need to take first.

Texas divorce: Protect your financial interests

When you married your spouse in a church or Texas courthouse, you no doubt expected your union to last a lifetime. Perhaps, 10 or more years have passed since that day and things have changed. You've changed. Your spouse has changed. Maybe you're one of many other spouses in this state who have decided they'd rather divorce than stay in an unhappy relationship. Especially if you've been working from home or out of the workforce altogether during marriage, divorce can have serious financial implications.

If you have children, your top priority is to make sure you have what you need to provide for their care. Many people divorce, then find themselves struggling to keep food on the table because they didn't understand how to protect their financial interests during proceedings. You can avoid similar problems by keeping several things in mind. For instance, it's a good idea to review state property division laws before heading to court.

Avoiding divorce because of money? Here's what you should do

Are you putting off divorce because you are worried about money? If so, you are not alone. Women all across Texas struggle with this decision, especially when their spouses are the primary earners. While it is true that divorce has the potential to negatively affect finances, being as prepared as possible can protect your financial security.

For some women, part of that preparation means stepping into unfamiliar and even uncomfortable territory. This is partly because it is not uncommon for a household's breadwinner to manage most of the money. Here are a few things to keep in mind when getting ready to file for divorce.

What does the 'best interests of the child' mean to the court?

Like most other parents here in San Antonio and elsewhere, you make a concerted effort to make sure you do what is in the best interests of your children. You make decisions every day that affect their lives, and you do so because you believe it will serve them not only today but also into the future. Then, you and your spouse end up divorcing.

Now, even if you work with your future former spouse to create a custody agreement and parenting plan, you will need to convince the court it serves your children's best interests. It can be quite disconcerting to know that the standards of someone you have never met and who doesn't know your children and your family will determine what is best for your children. Understanding how judges reach that decision may help you through this challenge.

Could your family benefit from a parallel parenting plan?

Perhaps right now, the only two things you and your spouse agree on is a divorce and that the divorce should have as little impact on the children as possible. While you may not see anything positive in the situation right now, it's at least a start.

Agreeing to insulate the children from your personal relationship as much as possible does provide a way forward. If you think this means attempting to co-parent when you can't even stand to look at each other, your anxiety level probably just went through the roof. Fortunately, you do not have to co-parent in order to give your children what you want.

The issue of spousal support and your financial future

When you go through a divorce, you are probably thinking about what this will mean for your financial future. Will you be able to maintain your lifestyle? Will you have to move or sell your family home? What's going to happen to your property and assets? These are only a few of the many questions you may have regarding your financial health and future prospects. 

In many divorces, one spouse may have to pay spousal support. Whether a spouse will be eligible for these benefits depends on many factors and the details of the individual financial situation. If you think you may have to pay this type of support or you think you have grounds to seek these payments, you will find it beneficial to start with understanding how and why a court makes alimony-related decisions.

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