In Texas, the division of marital assets often leads to the question, “Are personal injury settlements marital property?” Typically, assets obtained during a marriage are considered community property. However, personal injury settlements are usually an exception.
Texas law usually views personal injury settlements as separate property. These funds aren’t just about offsetting tangible losses. They aim to compensate an individual for personal setbacks, such as medical costs, emotional distress, or missed wages. Thus, the money obtained is typically seen as addressing the personal trauma of the injured party.
However, there are some factors where a personal injury settlement could be considered marital property and may be subject to court determination or divorce negotiations:
- Timing of the Injury: If you suffered an injury before the marriage, any related settlement is generally viewed as separate property.
- Reason for Compensation: If a section of the settlement is explicitly allocated to cover lost wages or medical expenses from the time of the marriage, this portion might fall under community property. It’s essentially about what the money is compensating for.
- Management of Funds: How you handle settlement funds can influence its designation. If you merge these funds with joint marital assets, such as a shared bank account, it could challenge its classification as separate property.
Navigating the complexities of personal injury settlements in Texas can be daunting, especially when considering how it might intertwine with marital assets. Suppose you or a loved one is navigating the aftermath of an injury and its associated settlement. In that case, you shouldn’t be left guessing about your rights or the implications of your decision.
You deserve expert guidance every step of the way. Contact Reyes Law for a free consultation with one of our personal injury lawyers today.