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Divorce for Professional Athletes

Attorneys Helping Families in Dallas

Professional athletes have high-profile jobs that are generally very lucrative. While people who play sports for a living represent a small proportion of the population, there is a higher rate of divorce for professional athletes than other individuals, with around 70 percent of their marriages failing. Divorces involving professional athletes are often more contentious than other family law matters, and more is at stake for both parties. If you or your estranged spouse play sports professionally and either of you wishes to end your marriage, it is essential to retain a lawyer who will fight to protect your interests. The zealous Dallas divorce attorneys of McClure Law Group are proficient at handling divorce matters involving prominent and successful individuals. If you hire us, we will aggressively pursue the best outcome available in your case.

Cases Involving Prenuptial Agreements

Many professional athletes have prenuptial agreements that dictate property and spousal support rights in the event of a divorce. Notably, however, they cannot establish child custody or child support rights. Under Texas law, a prenuptial agreement must be in writing, and it must have been entered into voluntarily by both parties to be valid. A court may deem a prenuptial agreement unconscionable and refuse to enforce it in cases in which either spouse was not fully informed of the other spouse’s assets or liabilities, and did not waive the right to such information. Other than cases involving a lack of financial disclosure or an involuntary signing, however, the courts will generally enforce prenuptial agreements.

Property Division in Divorce for Professional Athletes

In cases in which the parties are not bound by a prenuptial agreement, the courts will typically divide any property. Community property per Texas law is any property that either party obtains during the marriage, including income and real estate, with some exceptions such as damages awarded for personal injuries, gifts, and inheritances. Property owned by either party before the marriage is considered separate property and will remain that person’s property after the divorce. For example, if one spouse owned a house prior to the marriage, it will likely be regarded as separate property.

Any assets that are deemed community property may be divided between the spouses in a manner that the court considers equitable. Notably, equitable does not necessarily mean an equal division but constitutes a disbursement the court deems fair and just. The court will consider numerous factors in determining how community property should be distributed, including whether either spouse is at fault for the breakdown of the marriage, each spouse’s earning potential and current income, whether the parties have any children and, if so, which spouse primarily cares for them, and the health of both spouses.

Factors Weighed in Determining Whether to Award Spousal Maintenance

In divorce for professional athletes, many times the non-athlete spouse will request spousal maintenance, which is the term Texas uses for what is commonly known as alimony. In Texas, however, spousal maintenance is only awarded in limited circumstances. Specifically, it may be granted in cases in which the spouse from whom maintenance is sought committed an act of family violence against the requesting spouse or his or her child within two years of when the divorce action was instituted or while the suit is pending. It may also be awarded when the spouse seeking maintenance lacks the ability to earn an income sufficient to provide for his or her reasonable requirements, either due to a disability or because he or she is caring for a child with a disability. Maintenance may be given in cases in which the marriage has lasted ten or more years, and the spouse requesting maintenance cannot earn a sufficient amount of money to meet his or her needs as well. If a court finds that spousal maintenance is warranted, it will weigh numerous factors in assessing what constitutes an appropriate amount, including the length of the marriage, each spouse’s assets and liabilities, and the employment history and health of each spouse.

Meet with an Assertive Attorney in Dallas

While professional athletes have exciting and profitable careers, they also, unfortunately, have a high rate of marriage failure. If you are a professional athlete or are married to one, and you or your spouse intend to seek a divorce, it is wise to consult a lawyer to discuss your options. The assertive attorneys of McClure Law Group are adept at helping people involved in a complex dissolution of a marriage safeguard their rights, and we will work tirelessly on your behalf. Our main office is in Dallas, and we can also meet for consultations at our Collin County office in Plano. We frequently handle professional athlete divorces in Richardson, Rockwall, Garland, Fort Worth, Irving, McKinney, and Frisco. Additionally, we represent parties in family law cases in cities throughout Grayson, Denton, Collin, Rockwall, and Tarrant Counties. You can contact us at 214.692.8200 or via the online form to schedule a consultation.

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