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Who gets the pets in a divorce?

On Behalf of | Apr 18, 2017 | Property Division |

When you are getting a divorce in Texas, there are a lot of things to consider. Who gets ownership of any family pets is something that can be confusing. The reality is that pets are considered property under the law, according to Forbes. This means they are distributed according to property division laws and not under custody laws.

The best-case scenario is for you and your spouse to agree on who will retain the pets. You can do this through mediation or negotiations. Just be aware that some spouses will use the close connection between a pet and their spouses to try to bargain for other property. If you come to an agreement, it will be written into your divorce agreement and be filed with the court.

If you cannot come to an agreement, then it is left up to the court to decide. The court will look at various aspects of your lives to see where the pet is best placed. These aspects include who has the most time to care for the pet and when the pet was obtained. If it is a dog that you owned before you got married, for example, then you will likely be given ownership. For a family pet, the judge is also going to likely look at where the children will live because it is common for pets to be placed wherever the children will be spending the most time. This information is only intended to educate and should not be interpreted as legal advice.