Dividing Overseas Property in Divorce
While some divorces are straightforward, a divorce in which the parties own international assets can be complicated and contentious. There are multiple factors to weigh in determining how foreign property should be divided, including how to value the property and how to enforce any property division. If you or your spouse intends to proceed with a divorce and you own overseas property, it is advisable to retain an experienced Dallas divorce lawyer who is proficient at managing the intricate process of dissolving a marriage involving international property. The assertive legal team at McClure Law Group will aggressively pursue a division of your overseas property in divorce that is equitable and just under the facts of your case.Nature of Property
In any Texas divorce case, whether property will be divided in a divorce depends on whether it is community property, which means it is the property of both spouses, or separate property, which belongs solely to one spouse. In Texas, it is presumed that any property that either spouse obtains during the course of the marriage is community property. This presumption can only be overcome if one spouse produces evidence that is clear and convincing that the property in question is separate. Additionally, any property either spouse owned before the marriage, or that either spouse obtained through a gift, descent or devise, is considered separate property. Spouses can contractually stipulate that property will be separate property as well. While the laws of Texas clearly set forth the manner in which the nature of a property should be defined, international laws may characterize property differently, which may cause a dispute as to the nature of international property.Identifying and Valuing International Property
Although parties in a divorce are required to disclose all separate and community property, it is an unfortunate fact that people are not always truthful regarding the extent of the property they own. While investigations can be conducted to locate domestic property, uncovering hidden international property is exponentially more difficult and time consuming. Additionally, in some countries, privacy laws may restrict a person from being able to obtain information regarding property, even if his or her spouse owns the property. Even if both spouses disclose all of their assets, including international property, there may be a dispute regarding how the property should be valued. In most cases, you will need to hire an appraiser to determine the value of the property. Once the value of the property is obtained, the court will issue an order setting forth how the property should be disbursed. An attorney skilled in marital dissolution matters can help you pursue an appropriate order for dividing overseas property in divorce.Enforcing Property Division
If one of the parties refuses to comply with the court’s order regarding the division of marital property, there are steps the other party can take to seek enforcement of the order. For example, even if the Texas courts do not have jurisdiction over international property, they can nonetheless compel the party that owns the property to sell the property or provide his or her spouse with compensation for the value of the property.Consult a Trusted Dallas Attorney Regarding Your Divorce Case
While Texas law clearly delineates how property should be divided in a divorce, in cases involving international property, the process of dividing property and enforcing any court ordered division can be protracted and complicated. If you and your spouse own international assets and either of you wish to dissolve your marriage, it is wise to retain a seasoned lawyer who will advocate aggressively on your behalf to help you seek a favorable result. At the McClure Law Group, our attorneys are skilled at handling complex family law cases, including cases involving the division of overseas property in divorce. Our primary office is located in Dallas, but we are also available at our Collin County office in Plano by appointment. We assist parties in divorce lawsuits in areas including Dallas, Fort Worth, Irving, Garland, McKinney, Frisco, Richardson, and Rockwall. We also represent people in family law matters in cities in Dallas, Grayson, Collin, Denton, Tarrant, and Rockwall Counties. You can contact us at 214.692.8200 or via the online form to schedule a consultation regarding your case.