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Is my inheritance subject to equitable distribution in a divorce?

Many people in Longmont have had the experience of inheriting money or property from someone. Whether the benefactor is a parent or a distant relative you barely knew, the inheritance probable came after that person's death. There is a good chance that the question will come up regarding what happens to inherited property during a divorce.

Legally, inherited property is ordinarily considered to be separate property by Colorado's courts. This means that inherited assets are ordinarily not subject to equitable distribution in case of a divorce. If inherited property is considered separate property, this means that one's spouse cannot take part of it in a divorce. It is not subject to property division.

It is possible, however, for inherited property to lose its status as separate property and become subject to equitable distribution. This can happen when the property is commingled with marital property. Say that your great aunt leaves you $10,000 in her will and her executor sends you a check for $10,000. If you deposit the check in your joint checking account that you share with your spouse, the funds will most likely be found to have been commingled with the marital property already in the checking account. The $10,000 will probably be subject to equitable distribution in a subsequent divorce. On the other hand, if you deposit the check in a bank account that is in your name only, the funds most likely will not be commingled and will probably be considered to be separate property, and not subject to equitable distribution in a subsequent divorce.

The fate of any particular asset or item of property in a divorce depends on the specific facts and circumstances. Legal help is available for people who have questions regarding the possible status of their property in a divorce.

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