Divorce and Property Law


In a divorce, assets are often a major point of contention. Texas is a community property state, divorce and property law are all assets acquired during the marriage belong to both parties. There are, of course, exceptions such as gifts and inheritances, which remain separate. My property law experience as a Houston divorce lawyer can help you when it comes to dividing your assets.

During a divorce, the property acquired is to be divided “in a manner that the court deems just and right, having due regard for the rights of each party and any children of the marriage”. Frequently, parties think of this as a 50/50 split of the community property assets. However, there are a few things that can make the proration different. Considerations such as who has custody of the children, earning potential, educational background, and fault in the breakup of the marriage can have an effect on the ending percentage split of assets.

There are ways for you to protect your marital assets. As a Houston divorce lawyer, I can help you get a court order to keep assets from being moved until the divorce is final. This could help keep your spouse from emptying the joint checking, savings, or selling property without your knowledge. We can negotiate a fair split of the property. Many parties are open to mediation regarding these issues so that both parties walk away with an agreement that they believe works for their specific situation, rather than allowing a judge to make rulings on post-divorce ownership of assets and responsibility for indebtedness.

Division of assets becomes heated when one spouse insists he or she is entitled to a disproportionate division of the marital assets. With my 30 years of experience, I can help protect items, such as your retirement benefits, and help you get the share of the assets that you deserve.

In order to gain an early advantage, and give yourself a better chance of achieving your goal, you need to have good records. Detailed financial information, including a list documenting the value of assets complete with the nature of the assets, provides the proof of the marital estate. That in combination with my experience as a Houston divorce lawyer can give you the advantage.

Retirement Benefits

By use of a Qualified Domestic Relations Order, commonly referred to as QDRO, retirement benefits can be divided. Retirement benefits, including 401 (k), 403 (b), pensions, annuities, individual retirement accounts, and investment accounts are all subject to division under the law. With the understanding of how the property laws work and how retirement benefits are often divided, the Law Office of Marlene Dancer Adams can help ensure your financial future.

Hidden Assets

As an experienced divorce attorney, I work hard to discover hidden assets during divorce and property law. Sometimes, in high-net-worth divorces, one spouse hides assets from the other. This way the money or property is not discovered and included in the documentation of the marital estate and therefore not included in the division of assets.

There are many ways that individuals try to hide assets. Some try to put property in a family member’s name, others give money to friends for safe keeping, all in an effort to not share them with their spouse. However, I know how to conduct a thorough and proper investigation into all assets. I can help to uncover the hidden funds, misrepresented properties and under estimated income from a small business.


Debt is something no one wants to think about. While it would be nice to walk away from joint debt just because the marriage ends, it unfortunately doesn’t work that way. However, there is a way to divide the debt so that not all of it falls on the shoulders of one party. As an experienced Houston divorce lawyer, I will work with you on a debt division that protects your interests at the time of the divorce and after.