Many people who attempt to battle through an unsuccessful marriage will ultimately choose to end it in hopes for a better future. During a divorce, individuals can formally end the partnership and close out the shared business of the marriage. A divorce can help individuals settle many marital matters, but it still can't quite solve every problem associated with ending a marriage.
If you decide to end your marriage, you will want to understand exactly what a divorce can and cannot do for you. If you enter a divorce settlement with an unclear understanding, you may not achieve the best possible outcome for your emotional and financial futures, as the consequences of a binding divorce settlement can potentially affect your lifestyle for years to come.
The positives of a divorce
Divorce can be an effective and efficient way to settle certain marital and family matters:
- Property division - In the community property state of Texas, all marital assets are divided 50/50. There are resources available to you during this time who can help ensure the discovery of all eligible sources of marital property and help you understand what assets qualify as your own separate property.
- Spousal and child support - A divorce can also determine whether you are entitled to future spousal support payments. If you have children, the divorce settlement will outline the child support obligations – who will pay, how much and when. A support agreement may also give guidelines for college and medical expenses for children.
- Custody and visitation - If you have children, your divorce will settle the matter of custody. You will know at the end of your divorce whether you will share custody or whether one partner will be responsible for physical and legal custody.
The limitations of a divorce
A divorce can't always guarantee a solution for the following issues:
- An absolutely equal split - A divorce isn't settled with precise and mathematical accuracy. The judge will use the information available along with his or her best judgement based on the time and circumstances.
- Emotional well-being - The divorce settlement may not always heal emotional wounds, and these issues can take time and potentially the aid of a therapist.
- Civil relations - Just because you and your ex share custody, it doesn't mean that he or she will be pleasant when you exchange the children. You and your soon-to-be ex will still have to work on developing or maintaining a civil relationship post-divorce.
- Maintain one's lifestyle - A divorce also cannot increase your income or guarantee that you maintain your current standard of living, although the intent of any spousal support is to keep you as close to your previous standard of living as possible.
Where to turn to for help and support
With so much at stake, you probably have many questions and concerns if you are contemplating or already facing an upcoming divorce. By gaining an understanding of divorce laws related to property division, custody and support, you could significantly increase your odds of achieving the best possible outcome for your particular situation and moving on toward a brighter future.