The ink is not yet dry on the Divorce Decree and you get an email from your attorney about more post divorce work that needs to be done. Why? Because there are many matters that need to occur immediately after the divorce is done to be sure that your property rights are secure and your children are protected. First, at the same time the Decree is prepared, a Child Support Withholding Order should also be prepared, if necessary, which is a separate court order to ensure that child support is withheld from the obligor’s paycheck by their employer. This Order then needs to be activated by the District Clerk, which is the final step in making sure the child support begins to flow. There is typically a 14 day waiting period for the employer to set up the withholding. Also necessary to be done at the time of the Decree is the court order for division of retirement, if applicable. This order is called a Domestic Relations Order, which is then “qualified” by the Plan Administrator in order for the Alternate Payee to receive their share of their spouse’s retirement. Another post-divorce issue is division of real property, which often will require a Special Warranty Deed and a Deed of Trust to Secure Assumption. Sometimes, if a spouse’s share of the equity in the marital homestead is being paid at a later time, an Owelty Deed will be needed to secure that party’s interest, which Deed is unique to Texas matrimonial law. Additionally, there often are post-divorce issues of re-titling bank accounts, closing credit card accounts or exchanging household furniture, furnishings, artwork, etc. Consult with an experienced Texas family law attorney for these and other post-divorce issues.
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