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How to find community property assets after separation

Texas is a community property state. In a divorce proceeding, each spouse is entitled to exactly one-half of any community property acquired during marriage and before legal separation. In order to determine which assets are community and which are separate, individuals who are recently separated may want to start by taking an inventory of their property. Taking an inventory can be hard to do if the other party is attempting to hide assets. However, there are certain places to look to try to determine how much money or property another spouse possesses. When a spouse owns a business, the other party can review Schedule C of a 1040 form to identify total revenues. Individuals should pay attention to the lines titled "gross receipts or sale" and "tentative profit/loss." Schedules A may list real estate taxes for property that was unknown to another spouse, and Schedules A and B may show how much money a spouse earned in the form of investment interest and ordinary dividends. Schedule D will indicate how much a short or long term asset sold for, and Schedule E will show any rents or royalties received by a spouse. If a spouse is an officer in a corporation, Form 1125-E will detail any compensation received in that capacity. Other schedules and forms are applicable to Subchapter S corporations.Spouses may try to remove joint assets from a joint or separate bank account before a judge has a chance to effectuate a property division, so parties to a divorce should always keep tabs on their bank statements, financial statements and cancelled checks. Some people may have accounts or assets hidden in different accounts, so individuals may want to ask a family law attorney for help in issuing subpoenas to multiple banks.

Source: NJBIZ, "Industry Insights: Discovering hidden assets in divorce", April 21, 2014

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Bruce Turner

In addition to his law degree, Bruce Turner has a master's degree in tax law and is Board Certified in Commercial Real Estate Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization.

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Attorney Bruce Turner is located in Dallas and represents people and businesses throughout DFW and the Metroplex, including Denton, Carrollton, Lewisville, Flower Mound, Farmers Branch, Irving, Las Colinas, Corinth, Highland Village, The Colony, Plano, Frisco, Allen, McKinney, Mesquite, Grand Prairie, Garland and Grapevine as well as Collin County, Denton County and Dallas County in Texas.

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