During property division negotiations in a divorce in Texas, couples have to identify community property and separate property for the purposes of achieving a fair and just division of community property. Many couples prefer to negotiate the way in which assets will be distributed, rather than to leave it up to a judge. Assets that are commonly considered include real estate, vehicles, savings, retirement funds and more. However, it is the small items that often create the biggest problems. Getting a divorce also means dividing ordinary household items to set up two functioning post-divorce homes.
Items such as crockery, cutlery, pots and pans, along with bed linen, towels and curtains are subject to division between the parties. Clearly, however, a dining room set cannot be shared, and the resale value will be far less than the price of two replacement sets. The same goes for lounge furniture, a TV and other larger items. Contention may arise, as the spouse keeping the household items may feel that he or she is left with the old stuff, while having to sacrifice a share of marital funds to furnish a second home with new items.
Pieces of art, ornaments, and a variety of things in the house may have sentimental value for one or both spouses. It may be a wedding gift, something purchased while on a special vacation or at a time when money was tight. Whatever the reason for the object evoking emotions, sentimentality has to be set aside when dividing personal items. Allocating dollar values to items that have special meaning, or bring back particular memories, is also a difficult task.
Putting aside one’s emotions and sentiments is easier said than done, but may lessen the trauma of a divorce. Alternative dispute resolution, such as divorce mediation, may assist a couple with this difficult task. An experienced Texas attorney may suggest the services of a mediator who will facilitate negotiations between the divorcing spouses — each with his or her attorney participating. Rather than making decisions on behalf of the spouses, a mediator will provide guidance and make suggestions of ways to achieve a fair division of household items and sentimental objects.
Source: mediate.com, “Dividing Stuff“, Dr. Lynne C. Halem, Accessed on May 27, 2015