In many divorce cases, a spouse who got an inheritance from their parents will want to keep the whole inheritance. They don’t want to go through property division and give any percentage to their ex, let alone half of that money.
And, in a lot of situations, this is exactly what happens. The inheritance counts as a separate asset since it was given only to one person, or it may even have been inherited before the marriage. The money does not have to be divided between both people because it is not something that they jointly earned or purchased.
There’s one exception, which is when the inheritance has been commingled. You must know what this means and how it could impact your case.
Sharing and combining the money
Commingling is essentially the process of either combining the money from the inheritance with other marital funds or sharing it with your spouse so that they have a right to it. If this is done, then the inheritance is no longer separate property and it counts as marital property. This means that it does have to be divided.
For instance, perhaps you were given an inheritance and you used it to buy a family home together. You can’t demand that the entire proceeds of that family home go to you when you sell it because the home is a marital asset.
A complicated process
If you’re involved in a high-value divorce that you know is going to get fairly complicated, take the time to look into all of your legal options. You need to know exactly where you stand, what assets you deserve and how to take the proper steps to protect all of your rights at this time.