If you are going through a complex, high-asset divorce in Middle Tennessee, you may be wondering what will happen to the inheritance you received during your marriage. Will you have to split it with your soon-to-be ex-spouse, and how can you protect it from them?
Marital property in Tennessee
According to Tennessee law, property acquired during the marriage is marital property, and in our state, it is divided equitably. This means that marital property is divided fairly, or at least what the court believes is fair. The court uses various factors to determine what is fair, like the duration of the marriage and the contributions of each spouse, among many other factors.
Property that was brought into the marriage is separate, not marital property. In addition, gifts made to either spouse during the marriage, as well as individual inheritances received during the marriage are also separate property.
Can separate property become marital property?
Yes. If you commingled your separate property with marital property, the commingled property could lose its separate status. Separate property could be transmuted into marital property by the actions or intentions of the owning spouse, like adding the other spouse to the title of an inherited spouse.
Who gets the inheritance I received during the marriage?
Depending on what you did with it after you received it, probably, you. In Tennessee, an inheritance is considered your separate property regardless of when you received it. However, as mentioned above, an inheritance can lose its separate status and become marital property if it is commingled or transmuted with marital property.