How do you protect your inheritance in divorce?

On Behalf of | Apr 28, 2023 | Divorce

Matters of finance always have an element of stress to them. This is particularly true when the finances end up wrapped in a divorce.

Many divorcing couples have particular concerns about inheritance they may have received. How can these gifts from loved ones get protection during a divorce?

Keeping your funds separate

The General Court of Massachusetts is an equitable distribution state. This means that rather than dividing assets in an equal, 50-50 split sort of way, assets get divided in accordance with what is most fair.

In other words, the law does not demand any part of an inheritance go to the spouse in a divorce scenario by default. But if the assets from an inheritance get mixed in with jointly owned assets, it may create a bit of a problem.

Thus, one of the best protections is to keep funds separate even during a marriage. By not having a joint account, it is impossible for a person to deposit their inheritance funds into it, and thus the funds do not get touched in a split.

Have a prenuptial agreement

Two people who are about to marry draft and sign the document, which a notary public then notarizes before the wedding. It is a way for people to figure out what assets will go where in the event of a divorce.

In the past, people thought of this as uncouth and in bad faith. These days, however, more young people view it as the smart financial tool it is.