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Bryan Abercrombie Discusses How Courts Handle Pet Custody

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Image of a sleepy dog laying on a couchAny number of issues can end up getting contentious during the divorce process. More and more, divorcing couples are fighting over custody of the family pet.

Although pets are often considered part of the family by their adoring owners, in family court they are typically defined as property, according to Cordell & Cordell Texas family law attorney Bryan Abercrombie, who recently was interviewed about the topic on KTRH 740 AM-Houston.

“Most of the time people make their peace with one person getting the dog or cat,” Mr. Abercrombie said, “but sometimes, they really do love their fur babies.”

Even though people have a personal and emotional connection with their pets, the family dog or cat is treated like any other piece of property in family court.

“Normally, when people divide personal property they’ll take what’s in their possession, and sometimes there are listings of specific property that go to the husband or wife,” Mr. Abercrombie said. “But for the most part, people take what’s in their possession, so if you have possession of the dog, you’re going to keep the dog.”

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Frank Murphy

Written By Frank Murphy

Chief Compliance Officer
Frank Murphy

Frank Murphy is the Chief Compliance Officer and an Executive Partner at Cordell & Cordell. His responsibilities include oversight of the Firm’s compliance with Legal and Ethical obligations as well as contributing to the day-to-day operations of the Firm as an Executive Partner.

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