If I divorce, would my inheritance I received a few years ago be impacted? 29 Answers as of May 25, 2015

About 7 years ago, I received a large inheritance from my aunt in her will. Will this inheritance be protected from having to be split in the divorce if I hire a good enough lawyer to represent me? I have worked out nearly all the other details of my divorce with my husband, and will begin the process soon.

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Law Office of Barton R. Resnicoff | Barton R. Resnicoff
What you inherited from your aunt started off as separate property unless your aunt gave it to both of you(inheritances are separate property assets); as long as you kept it separate from other, marital assets, there should not be a problem. The only problem would be if you comingled the inherited funds with marital funds or put them into a joint account.
Answer Applies to: New York
Replied: 5/25/2015
Peyton and Associates | Barbara Peyton
In California inheritance is treated as your separate property and not subject to division in divorce unless you commingled that money with community property money. If there is income from the inheritance, it will be considered in setting child and spousal support. Hope that helps.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 5/25/2015
Law Office of Martin A. Kahan | Martin A. Kahan
Get a "good enough" attorney. Inheritance is presumed to be separate property, with exceptions such as commingling the funds.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 5/22/2015
Minor, Bandonis and Haggerty, P.C.
Minor, Bandonis and Haggerty, P.C. | Brian Haggerty
Hire a good divorce lawyer. If you have not commingled funds from the inheritance with other marital property, you might be able to protect it.
Answer Applies to: Oregon
Replied: 5/22/2015
Diane l. Berger | Diane L. Berger
If what you inherited was kept separate from marital assets, there should be no division of this non-marital asset.
Answer Applies to: Nebraska
Replied: 5/22/2015
    Ronald K. Nims LLC | Ronald K. Nims
    If you kept the money apart from your joint assets, it will be considered separate property and not impacted in the divorce. For example, you put the inheritance in a separate account, in your name, then it would be separate property. Even if you took out money sometimes to pay joint bills or repair the joint residence, etc. On the other hand, if you mixed the inheritance with your paychecks and/or your husband's paychecks and paid your joint bills out of this joint account. It would be impossible to identify your inheritance out of the mix of funds in the account.
    Answer Applies to: Ohio
    Replied: 5/22/2015
    Law Office of T. Phillip Boggess | T. Phillip Boggess
    Some of this may depend on whether the inheritance was commingled with other marital assets. If they have been separate and not commingled, you have a good chance of keeping them provided that you get someone good to represent you.
    Answer Applies to: Illinois
    Replied: 5/22/2015
    The Law Office of David L. Leon
    The Law Office of David L. Leon | David L. Leon
    The inheritance should you be your separate property, which means that it's yours, assuming you kept it separate. It may come into play when calculating support obligations, debts, etc. Yes, you will need a good lawyer.
    Answer Applies to: Texas
    Replied: 5/22/2015
    Attorney at Law | Aimee C. Robbins
    Yes if you have not co-mingled or gifted any of your inheritance to your wife. If not, your inheritance is not marital property and therefore not subject to a division upon a divorce.
    Answer Applies to: Maryland
    Replied: 5/22/2015
    Law Offices of George H. Shers | George H. Shers
    If you are in a community property state such as California, such an inheritance would be considered your separate property, unless you mixed it in with the community property, so not subject to being divided in the divorce.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 5/21/2015
    The Stutes Law Group, LLC
    The Stutes Law Group, LLC | Ronald E. Stutes
    An inheritance is your separate property, and your husband has no claim on it, unless you "commingled" the money with community funds. You should be able to get it with no problem, even if you hire an average lawyer.
    Answer Applies to: Louisiana
    Replied: 5/21/2015
    James T. Weiner & Associates, P.C.
    James T. Weiner & Associates, P.C. | James T. Weiner
    More information is needed because generally If you kept the inheritance separate from marital property you can keep it all.. to the extent you co-mingled it with marital property it became marital property.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 5/21/2015
    Law Office Of Victor Waid
    Law Office Of Victor Waid | Victor Waid
    Suggest you obtain a good family law lawyer to represent you in the whole divorce, not just the inheritance protection part, to make sure your inheritance is not impacted; hope you did not comingle your separate property with your community property. Most lawyers will not take the case unless they can control and resolve the whole problem to his client's satisfaction.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 5/21/2015
    Mediation Services of Southwest Florida
    Mediation Services of Southwest Florida | Dennis J. Leffert, J.D.
    if you have kept your inheritance separate from the marital monies and properties, it is fair to say it is probably all yours. If, however, you commingled it in anyway, your spouse may have a reasonable claim to half. Good luck.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 5/21/2015
    Attorney At Law | James G. Maguire
    The inheritance was your separate property, not part of the community between you and your husband. If you maintained this inheritance as separate property, and not commingled it with community assets, it remains yours.
    Answer Applies to: Louisiana
    Replied: 5/21/2015
    Law Offices of Helene Ellenbogen, P.S.H | Helene Ellenbogen
    If you kept the inheritance separate (not in a joint account or an account comingled with earnings) then it is clearly separate property. If you comingled it you would have to be able to trace it for it to be counted as separate property. Yes, by all means, get a lawyer. This is a complex issue, especially if it wasn't properly handled to begin with.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 5/21/2015
    Sebby Law Office
    Sebby Law Office | Jayne Sebby
    The answer depends on what state you live in and how the money was used. If you live in a community property state, you might be required to consider the inheritance a marital estate. Most states, however, consider inheritances as belonging solely to the person named in the will.
    Answer Applies to: Nebraska
    Replied: 5/21/2015
    Law Ofices of Edwin K. Niles | Edwin K. Niles
    An inheritance is your separate property, and your wife has no claim to it, as long as it is still identifiable.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 5/21/2015
    Law Offices of Arlene D. Kock
    Law Offices of Arlene D. Kock | Arlene D. Kock
    Any inheritance before or AFTER marriage or gift to a spouse is separate property. Be sure to properly sequester and not commingle with community assets or accounts.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 5/21/2015
    Joanna Mitchell & Associates, P.A.
    Joanna Mitchell & Associates, P.A. | Joanna Mitchell
    A lot will depend on how you have handled the money and whether you kept it completely separate or comingled it together with other marital funds and/or assets. You need to discuss this with an attorney who can get answers to the foregoing questions and others in order to help you make a proper determination. You need to consult with an attorney.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 5/21/2015
    Ashcraft & Ashcraft, Ltd.
    Ashcraft & Ashcraft, Ltd. | Randall C. Romei
    An inheritance is non-marital property and not subject to division in a divorce settlement agreement. The problem arises in what was done with the inheritance in the 7 years since you received it. It is possible for non-marital property to become marital property based upon how it was dealt with during the course of the marriage. You need to speak with a family law attorney to determine if the inheritance has become tainted and part or all of it subject to division as marital property.
    Answer Applies to: Illinois
    Replied: 5/21/2015
    Stephens Gourley & Bywater | David A. Stephens
    Inheritances are separate property. Unless it has been converted to community property the divorce should not affect the ownership of the inheritance.
    Answer Applies to: Nevada
    Replied: 5/21/2015
    Richard B. Jacobson & Associates, LLC | Richard B. Jacobson
    First things first: retain an experienced family law attorney if major sums of money or other important interests are involved. That said, the general rule in Wisconsin is that inheritances remain the separate property of the heir or beneficiary to the extent they are not commingled with other property. Even if they are commingled with the other spouse's property, you have a good chance of protecting the inheritance if the money can be traced. Good Luck.
    Answer Applies to: Wisconsin
    Replied: 5/21/2015
    Peggy M. Raddatz
    Peggy M. Raddatz | Peggy M. Raddatz
    That depends if you kept the inheritance separate from your marital accounts and what you did with it. Go consult with a divorce lawyer to discuss this issue in the detail it requires.
    Answer Applies to: Illinois
    Replied: 5/21/2015
    Musilli Brennan Associates PLLC
    Musilli Brennan Associates PLLC | John F Brennan
    Get an attorney NOW. The inheritance might be protectable of it was kept separate. Clearly there are going to be issues. Seek counsel before you make any offers or commitments.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 5/21/2015
    Law Office of Pamela Braynon | Pamela Y. Braynon
    No it shouldn't. The money was bequeathed to you and not your husband. Florida is not a community property state (where he would be able to get 1/2 of everything).
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 5/21/2015
    Law Office Of Jody A. Miller
    Law Office Of Jody A. Miller | Jody A. Miller
    If you kept the inheritance separate and did not commingle it with marital property, then chances are good that it will remain your separate property and not subject to equitable division. If you commingled the inheritance with marital property, then to that extent it could be considered marital property subject to equitable division.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 5/21/2015
    Patrick W. Currin, Attorney at Law | Patrick Currin
    Not usually no. This is separate property unless you did something like mingle it for say, the purchase of a home or other asset or otherwise converted it to a community asset.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 5/21/2015
    Goldsmith & Guymon
    Goldsmith & Guymon | Dara Goldsmith
    It will all depend upon on how you titled the assets that you inherited. Did you leave them in an account only in your own name as sole and separate property, or did you put the monies in a joint account with your husband. You need to discuss the specific details with an attorney. If you put the monies in both names, then you made a gift of to your husband. Seek legal counsel. Bring evidence of how you titled the assets. This information is only intended to give general information in response to an inquiry. It does not establish an attorney client relationship. This response is only based upon the limited facts presented and is merely intended to assist you in determining if you should contact an attorney to provide you with legal advice.
    Answer Applies to: Nevada
    Replied: 5/21/2015
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