If you're going through a divorce and have long since separated from your former partner, you may wonder if any money you received since you split would be taken into account during settlement. You may imagine that inheritance money or something similar should be kept out of the mix as it was received when you were effectively single and should not form part of the property. However, there's more to this situation than meets the eye, and you need to consider several factors as you determine your best approach. What do you need to bear in mind?
The Property Pool
In legal terms, the court will consider the assets of both parties as of the date of any trial. This means that even though your inheritance was received after you split, it will still need to go into the property pool as of the date of the trial.
Weighing Things up
Because the court has to determine how this pool should be distributed, they will take into account many different factors. First and foremost, they will look at how each party contributed to the overall association, which can sometimes be tricky to determine.
What Is Contribution?
When the court looks at contribution, this can include tangible and intangible elements. They will consider how the parties added to the property pool through financial contributions and how much time and effort they may have put in. If somebody was not a wage-earner but still spent most of their time looking after children or maintaining a household, this will certainly have a bearing.
Bolstering Your Contribution
However, in your case, you may be able to make a strong argument that your inheritance has certainly added a lot to the property pool from a financial point of view. This may convince the court that you contributed more to the marriage than you did, should you not have received that inheritance. Therefore, you may be able to keep more of the inheritance than you would otherwise, simply due to this calculation.
You may be disappointed to hear that you cannot keep all of the inheritance even though you received it after you split up. However, with sound reasoning and arguments, you may be able to get a higher percentage of the entire asset pool during settlement.
Getting Legal Help
As you can see, this is quite a complicated situation, and you should always commission the services of a family lawyer with experience in this area. The solicitor will help you to draw up a case and present arguments to the court as the process unfolds. For more information about family law, contact a local service.
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