An inheritance can make a big difference in your financial situation. In general, inheritances are considered separate assets when couples in Texas get divorced. But, depending on how that inheritance is handled, it can be considered marital property. However, there are ways to protect your inheritance through prenup or postnup agreements.
Marital, separate and commingled property
For the division of assets, there are several types of property considered. These include:
- Marital or joint property or are assets acquired by the spouses during their marriage
- Separate property or assets each spouse already owned when they came into the marriage or individual gifts they received
- Inheritances received during marriage are normally considered separate property
- Commingled property or assets that have somewhat become joint through their use
It is easy to commingle property if spouses are not careful. For example, using inheritance money to support both spouses during the marriage or using an inherited property for the benefit of the marriage can transform those assets from separate to marital through their commingling. This can make a big difference in a high asset divorce.
How can prenups or postnups protect your inheritance?
If you expect to receive an inheritance while you are married, including information about the inheritance in your prenup or postnup might help you protect it and keep it as separate property if your marriage does not work out and you decide to seek a divorce. However, you will need to be careful that you actively work towards maintaining our inheritance and any other individual property separate from the marital property during the marriage.
Finances are often a source of conflict during marriage and divorce. Being honest and open about your finances and using prenups and postnup agreements to clarify the gray areas can help you both during your marriage and if you need to seek a divorce.