James R. Schaffer, P.A.

How an inheritance may be treated in a high asset divorce

| Apr 19, 2018 | High Asset Divorce |

Throughout Tampa, individuals attempt to prepare themselves and their family members by preparing estate plans that outline how their assets should be divided up when they are no longer alive to manage them. Through their estate planning documents, they may leave sizable inheritances to their children, spouses and friends.

Receiving an inheritance can be a special experience for a person, but that experience can quickly become a headache if their inheritance becomes a point of contention during a divorce. As with other financial matters related to high asset divorces, courts will look carefully at how the recipients of the inheritances came into possession of their inherited assets to decide if and how they should be divided.

How an inheritance is conveyed and then how it is used once received by a recipient will play into whether it will be divided in a divorce-related property settlement. If the inheritance was made to both parties to a marriage jointly or if one person received the inheritance and immediately comingled it with joint marital assets, then the inheritance will likely be viewed as marital property.

If, however, an inheritance is given to only one spouse and that spouse maintains it as their separate property, then they may have a strong case for arguing that the inherited property should not be subject to division with their spouse. Clarification on these and other issues cannot be made in this post as it does not offer legal advice, but readers with questions about inheritances, property division and other divorce matters can discuss their questions with their family law attorneys.