Nowadays, an increasing number of individuals are starting to treat and view their pets as if they were their children with four legs or wings. But regardless of how much you care for them and treat them like family, Texas law considers them to be property and an asset that must be shared during a divorce.
Contrary to your children, the Court will not automatically establish a possession and access schedule for your dogs. If your pet is separate property, which means it was acquired before the marriage, you will probably receive the animal as part of the divorce settlement. Things might get more complicated, though, if it turns out that the animal is community property, which means that it was purchased with monies from the marriage.
This does not imply that the family dog’s destiny will be decided by the Court in the same manner as the dining room table. Judges are regular individuals who are likely to comprehend the close relationships that might develop between owners and their pets as well as the opposite. A judge will take into account a number of variables when deciding which spouse gets to keep which pets. These variables include the following issues: Who is responsible for the animal’s care? Has a spouse been accused of neglecting or abusing the animal? Which partner will spend more time with the pet?
Additionally, the Court will consider how the pets contribute to the children’s best interests if there are youngsters involved in the divorce. For instance, the court might rule that because the children and the pet have such a close attachment, the primary parent should keep the animal. Because when children are involved, the Court’s top priority is always to protect their best interests.
As I already said, a judge won’t decide on your pet’s visitation schedule. Any agreements you and your ex-spouse have respecting them will be upheld by the judge. In other words, if you have a prenuptial agreement, postnuptial agreement, or a clause in your divorce judgment detailing agreements between your ex-spouse and the animals, a Court can enforce them against your ex-spouse.
You need a capable lawyer on your side if you want to ensure that the dog, cat, reptile, bird, fish, or horse comes home with you after a divorce. one who will defend you in every situation, no matter how serious.