The divorce process can be messy particularly when the two spouses do not see eye to eye on the financial aspect of it. Property division, for example, is often a major point of contention. However, a few tips may help with navigating money-related matters during the dissolution of a marriage in Pennsylvania.

The main issues in a divorce financial settlement are marital debts and marital assets. Both assets and debts have to be divided between both parties during the divorce proceeding. Marital assets include assets acquired during the marital union and due to the union. However, an inheritance that a spouse receives during the marriage is not considered a marital asset if it is not co-mingled.

For example, if a spouse inherits $50,000 during the marriage and puts this money into the couple’s joint bank account, this spouse has essentially made a gift to the other party through co-mingling the funds. However, if the spouse keeps this money in a separate account, it legally does not have to be split as part of the divorce proceeding. Furthermore, property that is obtained as an inheritance may become marital property based on how the property is titled.

Determining what assets are truly marital assets versus separate property can understandably be challenging when tackling property division during divorce. This is especially the case when both parties have brought several of their own items into the marriage. However, an attorney in Pennsylvania can clarify what assets have to be divided as part of a financial settlement.

Source: sitnews.us, “Minimizing the financial costs of divorce“, Mary Lynne Dahl, May 21, 2017