Divorce brings with it many problems and uncertainties. Disentangling your life from your spouse can be a complicated process. That disentanglement includes countless details that fall into the category of finances, assets, and property. This is often a contentious issue with both sides seeking what they believe to be to their advantage in the matter. Since Virginia falls under the equitable distribution of marital property rule, courts will decide the issue according to what they believe to be fair according to the factors laid out under Virginia law. That law is Title 20 Chapter 6 Section 20-107.3.
The first thing to know on this issue is that only marital property is subject to the equitable distribution rule. Marital property consists of all the property and assets that you and your spouse acquire together from the day you marry. Property that you acquired separately prior to the marriage does not fall under the rule of equitable distribution; it is not considered marital property but separate property. This rule generally holds true unless you commingle your separate property into the marital property during your marriage. For example, a rental home you owned prior to the marriage brings in income each month that is deposited into your joint savings account for both you and your spouse to use. Then the matter becomes more complicated requiring the court to review and evaluate what it considers to be fair to both parties.
Separate Property as Defined by Law
Separate property as defined under the above-referenced law also includes “all property acquired during the marriage by bequest, devise, descent, survivorship, or gift from a source other than the other party.” This means that any inheritance, gift, or other property given solely to you from someone other than your spouse, such as a parent, is your property alone. So the simple answer to your question is, “no, your spouse is not entitled to your inheritance money in your divorce.”
Still Have Questions or Concerns About Your Divorce?
Many issues can arise through divorce and there is no substitute for knowledgeable and trusted legal representation to help you navigate them. If you are facing divorce or any other family law matter in or around Fairfax, we strongly urge you to take advantage of the experience, legal skills, and resources available at Malinowski Hubbard PLLC. Our legal team provides personalized solutions based on your unique needs and circumstances. We are backed by 55 years of combined legal experience in the exclusive practice of family law.
Ready to discuss your family law issue? Contact us at (703) 935-4222 to arrange to speak with one of our capable attorneys today.