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What steps can you take to preserve your inheritance during divorce?

What steps can you take to preserve your inheritance during divorce?

What steps can you take to preserve your inheritance during divorce?

What steps can you take t…
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To be clear, property that has been acquired during the marriage by gift or inheritance from a third party is non-marital property. However, the problem that often occurs is that the non-marital gift or inheritance becomes commingled with marital property so that it can no longer directly traced to the non-marital source. This is called commingling an asset. Once an asset is commingled it is very difficult to parse out any non-marital portion. A good rule of thumb to remember is that money looks the same no matter where it is held. If funds are all thrown together, it becomes impossible to tell which dollar is which.

For example, if a spouse inherits money from her parent, and deposits that money into a joint bank account with her spouse or deposits the funds into some other account (that account could even be an individually held account of hers) and also deposits her paycheck into that account as well, it becomes impossible to directly trace a specific dollar of the inherited money from a dollar of the marital funds. In that example, all of the funds in either account become marital funds due to commingling. In court, the spouse claiming that an asset is non-marital has the burden to prove (not just claim) that an asset has remained non-marital.

The reality is that most people don't live their married lives planning for a divorce. So if this is important to you, the best way to preserve the non-marital property is to negotiate, and enter into, a valid prenuptial or post-nuptial agreement to address these specific issues.

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“I highly recommend Geoff. He and his all-star team assisted me through a difficult and contentious divorce and child custody case. Geoff’s knowledge and personal relationships really assisted in the positive outcome of my case. Geoff was efficient throughout the…”
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“Took a personalized approach to my complex divorce and was available to achieve an outcome beyond my highest expectations.”
– Divorce Client , ★★★★★ Lawyers.com Review
“Strategic and Pragmatic. Geoff has seen plenty of situations and how they play out. Geoff has an expert understanding of the process. Geoff does a great job of communication and letting you know what’s going on by including you in…”
– Divorce Client , ★★★★★ Avvo Review
“One of the most dedicated, fair, competent, patient attorneys I have had the pleasure of dealing with. He has helped myself and many others through some difficult times. He is a very good listener and can direct you in the…”
– Divorce Client , ★★★★★ Lawyers.com Review
“Excellent at simultaneously executing specific tactical aspects of the case while maintaining overall macro view.”
– Family Law Attorney
“I have worked with Geoffrey S. Platnick as an expert witness in several cases and find him to be an excellent attorney with a real interest in his clients.”
– Child Custody Expert , ★★★★★ Lawyers.com Review
“Absolutely amazing during a very difficult time.”
– Divorce Client , ★★★★★ Lawyers.com Review
“He is a brilliant lawyer, a fantastic strategist, willing to resolve cases through mediation but kick butt in court if that is required, and in the final analysis, effective in achieving his clients’ goals. One of the really great ones.…”
– Family Law Client , ★★★★★ Martindale-Hubbell Review
“A very empathetic and diligent person and attorney. His tact in suggesting acceptable solutions to emotionally charged situations and sensitivity to child issues that can easily get neglected in the egoic fracases in such cases is truly exemplary. I am,…”
– Family Law Client , ★★★★★ Martindale-Hubbell Review

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