The process of dividing wealth and assets can be one of the most intimidating aspects of dissolving a marriage. One factor many individuals in Maryland may wish to address could pertain to knowing how to differentiate between separate and marital property. While separate assets might not be subject to division during divorce proceedings, if these commingled with marital wealth, they could lose their separate identity in the process.
Examples of commingled assets
Any asset a person owns prior to entering a marriage may be deemed separate wealth, provided such assets are not mixed with marital wealth in any way. However, there may be many scenarios in which these assets may lose their separate identity. For instance, if sources of income are used to make improvements to a home or property a person owned prior to entering the marriage, at least a portion of the property’s value may be deemed marital wealth during divorce proceedings.
Inheritances are another prevalent example of a type of separate property, even if one obtains such an asset during a marriage. However, if inheritance funds are mixed with marital wealth or placed in joint bank accounts, this could affect the separate identity of the assets. Experts indicate that there are a multitude of scenarios in which the comingling of marital and separate wealth can occur and even if this is inadvertent, the outcome could prove devastating.
Dissolving a marriage
Addressing the topic of marital versus separate property can be a vital aspect of preparing to safeguard one’s future during a divorce. Those who have questions about this part of the process might benefit from speaking with an attorney for guidance on every topic to consider regarding the comingling of separate wealth. An attorney in Maryland can help a client understand what is on the line and assist in preparing a strategy for subsequent legal proceedings that focuses on preserving his or her interests and goals for the future.