People going through a divorce often wonder if they have to share money or property they received from an inheritance. The answer is a qualified “no”. The reason it is “qualified” is because the inheritance must be kept separate from other marital assets. As an example, if you receive a sum of money, let’s say $10,000.00, from Grandpa Joe, that money, by definition is your sole and separate property.
The definition of separate property is contained in A.R.S. §25-213(A) as follows:
A spouse’s real and personal property that is owned by that spouse before marriage and that is acquired by that spouse during the marriage by gift, devise or descent, and the increase, rents, issues and profits of that property, is the separate property of that spouse.
In our example, if you put that $10,000.00 in a bank account that contains salary, bonuses, commissions or other earnings earned during the marriage, there is a strong likelihood that the $10,000.00 has lost its character as sole and separate property. Once it is deposited with marital community money and commingled together, it becomes community property. So as long as you keep your inheritance separate, you can keep it as your sole and separate property in the event of a divorce.
Daniel J. Siegel is a Certified Specialist in Family Law by the State Bar of Arizona. For help with any family law related matter, call Daniel J. Siegel, P.C. at 602-274-1099.
This article is for informational purposes only. The information contained herein is not legal advice, nor is it intended to be. Readers should not act upon information contained herein without first seeking the advice of a qualified attorney. Please contact Daniel J. Siegel, P.C. with any questions, 602-274-1099.Follow me on social media: