The treatment and relevance of an inheritance or gift in property settlement depends on various factors, including the timing of the inheritance or gift and how it was used or dealt with during the relationship. Here are some general principles.
Contribution and use of the inheritance or gift
If the inheritance or gift is received during the relationship and is used to acquire assets, reduce debts, or improve the financial position of the parties, it may be seen as a contribution to the relationship’s property pool. In such cases, the court may consider it as an additional financial contribution of the receiving party when assessing the division of assets.
Length of the relationship and other contributions
The length of the relationship, as well as the financial and non-financial contributions made by both parties, are relevant factors in property settlement.
If a substantial period has passed since the inheritance or gift was received, and other contributions have been made during the relationship, the court may consider the inheritance or gift to be less relevant when determining the division of property.
Timing of the inheritance or gift
The timing of the inheritance or gift can be crucial in determining its treatment during property settlement. In general, if the inheritance or gift is to be received after separation, it may be considered a financial resource of the receiving party and may not be subject to division.
Future needs and just and equitable outcome
The court considers the future needs of both parties when making property settlement decisions. If one party received a significant inheritance or gift, but the other party has limited financial resources or needs, the court may make adjustments to achieve a just and equitable outcome.
Don’t let the complexities of property settlement stand in your way of making a fresh start.
As part of all of our consent order packages, we will review the details of your financial information and agreed asset split, and assess if your agreement is likely to be approved by the court in consent orders.
We will factor in all that you tell us about any inheritances or gifts either party has received.