In a Texas divorce, if the parties do not agree on how to divide their community property amongst themselves, the court will step in and divide a couple’s property in a “just and right” manner. Texas Family Code 7.001. A “just and right” division can be a 50-50 even split of property, or a disproportionate split, depending on various factors. Such factors that the court will consider when ordering a disproportionate split are each spouse’s relative capacities and abilities, benefits which the party not at fault would have derived from continuation of the marriage, business opportunities, education, relative physical conditions, relative financial conditions and obligations, disparity of ages, size of separate estates, and the nature of the property.” Murff v. Murff, 615 S. W. 2d 696, 699 (Tex. 1981).
In general, we commonly see each spouse either agreeing to keep the vehicle he or she primarily drives or the court ordering that each spouse keeps the vehicle he or she primarily drives. But what happens if the community estate owns more than two vehicles, or owns other recreational toys such as boats, 4-wheelers, or motorcycles?
Each asset will then be assigned a value (less any outstanding loans or liens), and that value will be used when dividing the overall estate. There are many easy to use websites or apps to ascertain the value of items – one such commonly used valuation tool is Kelley Blue Book for vehicles and NADA for boats and personal watercrafts. Bear in mind that the value assigned to this asset is not necessarily what you paid for it, brand new, at the store or car lot; the value is based on what you could sell it for presently (fair market value).
The Southlake divorce lawyers at Justice Law Firm, PC are extremely familiar with how to property negotiate and divide a marital estate in a divorce setting. We would be happy to consult with you regarding any specific questions you may have. Please call the office at 817-421-0300 to schedule a consultation with one of our award-winning attorneys today.