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Hurst, TX Divorce and Family Law AttorneyDivorce can be one of the most difficult and stressful experiences you can go through. As you work to negotiate a settlement that will meet your needs, address the many ways your life is changing, and take steps to ensure that you will be treated fairly, the process of divorce can be emotionally draining. Fortunately, there are alternatives to traditional litigation in court, and divorce mediation is often the most beneficial option for everyone involved. By understanding the advantages and disadvantages of mediation, you can decide if this method is right for you.

What Is Divorce Mediation?

As you consider whether to use mediation, it is important to understand exactly what it entails. Divorce mediation is a voluntary process in which two divorcing spouses attempt to settle their differences with the help of a mediator. The mediator is an impartial third party who facilitates communication between the spouses and helps them work together to reach an agreement on all issues related to their divorce, such as child custody, division of assets and debts, spousal maintenance, etc. It is important to note that the mediator does not make decisions or provide legal advice; instead, they act as a facilitator by helping each spouse understand the other’s point of view while guiding the couple towards agreements they can both be satisfied with.

Advantages of Divorce Mediation

  • Cost savings: One of the primary advantages of divorce mediation is that it will provide savings for both parties, especially when compared to traditional court proceedings. While you and your spouse will still be advised to hire separate attorneys, and you may need to pay some court fees during your case, splitting the costs of a single mediator will be much less expensive than paying for your attorneys to negotiate with each other, appear in multiple court hearings, and prepare for a trial. Since the mediation process is often much faster than litigation, it can help save a great deal of time and money in the long run.


Hurst, TX Lawyer Handling Alimony CasesStay-at-home parents play an important role in raising children and managing a household. However, a parent who has not worked outside the home for an extended period of time or who has foregone career opportunities in order to focus on household responsibilities may be concerned about what will happen in the event of divorce. In these cases, a parent may worry that they will be unable to continue staying at home to provide care for their children, and if they choose to return to work, they may be uncertain about their career prospects and their ability to meet their ongoing needs. Depending on the circumstances of a particular case, a stay-at-home parent may be eligible to receive spousal maintenance (commonly known as alimony).

Types of Alimony in Texas

In Texas, there are two types of alimony that may be available to stay-at-home parents: temporary and permanent spousal maintenance. Temporary maintenance is usually awarded when one spouse needs financial assistance while they wait for the divorce proceedings to be finalized. This type of maintenance typically lasts until the divorce is complete and ceases once it has been finalized. Permanent maintenance will provide long-term financial assistance after the divorce has been finalized.

Permanent alimony will usually only be awarded if specific eligibility requirements have been met. If a couple was married for at least 10 years, and the spouse seeking maintenance does not have the ability to provide for their own financial needs, a court may determine that alimony is appropriate. A person may also be eligible for maintenance if they have been married for less than 10 years, but they have a physical or mental disability that prevents them from working and earning enough to support themselves, their ability to work is limited because they are the primary caretaker of a child with a disability that requires substantial care and supervision, or the other spouse committed acts of domestic violence within two years before the couple's divorce case began.


Hurst Retirement Asset Divorce LawyerGetting a divorce can be a complex and stressful process, and there are a variety of issues that will need to be addressed before a marriage can be legally dissolved. Many of these issues will be related to the property division process, and disputes can arise between spouses about who should get what pieces of property or who will be responsible for certain debts. Of the different types of complex property issues that may need to be resolved, determining how to divide assets such as retirement savings accounts or pension benefits can be especially complicated. It is important for spouses to understand the applicable state laws that address the division of assets and the steps they can take to protect their financial interests.

Texas Law on Dividing Marital Assets

Under the Texas Family Code, all property acquired by either spouse during a couple's marriage is considered to be community property that is subject to division in a divorce. This includes any funds saved in retirement accounts or benefits that were earned during the course of the marriage. In Texas, all marital property is subject to “equitable division.” This means that the court will divide property between spouses in a manner that is considered to be "just and right." To determine how property should be divided, a variety of factors may be considered, including each spouse's age, health, earning capacity, education level, job-related skills, and more. Assets will not necessarily be divided 50/50 between the two parties; instead, the court will look at each party's individual situation and determine a way to divide assets as fairly as possible.

Retirement Assets and QDROs

Retirement accounts are considered marital property in Texas, and thus, they must be divided alongside other property during divorce proceedings. Retirement assets that may need to be addressed include 401(k)s, pension plans, IRAs, stock options, annuities, and deferred compensation plans. The ways these assets may be divided can vary depending on a couple's individual situation. For example, each spouse may maintain ownership of a 401(k) or IRA that is in their name, but if one spouse's account has a higher balance, some of the funds in their account may be transferred to the other spouse.


Hurst, TX Child Support and Alimony LawyerWhen parents decide to divorce, the process of separating their lives, establishing new living arrangements, and determining when children will live with each of them can be difficult and confusing. In addition to the practical concerns related to when parents will spend time with children and other child custody issues, financial matters will play a major role in these cases. One of the most important financial issues that must be addressed is child support. In Texas, there are several factors that could affect a child support agreement in a couple's divorce. It is important to understand these factors and how they could influence the outcome of a divorce case. 

Types of Income

The primary factor used to determine child support is the income of the parent who will be paying support. In general, the "noncustodial" parent, or the parent who has less visitation time with the children, will pay child support to the "custodial" parent. Multiple types of income may be considered, including wages, salary, bonuses, commissions, self-employment income, royalties, dividends, capital gains, severance pay, unemployment benefits, retirement benefits, Social Security benefits, workers' compensation benefits, annuities, or income received through the rental of a property. Certain types of deductions may be made, including federal and state income taxes, Social Security taxes, and union dues, to determine the parent's "net resources."

Calculating Child Support Payments

The amount of child support that a parent will pay is determined by a formula that multiplies the parent's net resources by a specific percentage. The percentage that is used will be based on the number of children the parents share:


Hurst, Texas Asset Division Divorce LawyerIn today’s world, it is increasingly common for couples to handle the divorce process collaboratively and amicably, without significant intervention from the court. This can work well when there are few conflicts or intractable disagreements that get in the way of negotiation, but there are other scenarios in which trying to resolve a divorce without litigation is simply too dangerous. One common example is a situation in which one spouse is not being honest with the other as their marriage is coming to an end. When many people think of deception in a marriage, they think of affairs and cheating, but there can also be a financial side of deception in the form of hidden assets.

Hidden Assets and Income

When a spouse attempts to hide assets before or during the divorce process, they usually do so in an effort to prevent them from being considered community property, and therefore subject to division in the divorce. This puts the other spouse at a major disadvantage unless they can work with an attorney to discover that the hidden assets exist and take legal action to rectify the situation.

There are several warning signs that your spouse might be hiding assets, including but not limited to: 


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