How an Inheritance could hurt you in a divorce

If you are getting divorced and you are entitled to a large inheritance, although the Court cannot distribute your inheritance as part of the marital estate (unless you put it into joint names), it still must be disclosed as part of the divorce process. Inheritance that you are entitled to prior to the divorce due, can hurt you in the distribution of the marital assets even though the inheritance is not marital. One of the factors that the court considers in determining how to distribute marital assets is the separate estate of the other party at the time of the distribution. If you have a large inheritance, this could lead the Master in Divorce or the Judge to decide that you deserve less of the marital estate than they otherwise would award you if you had no inheritance.

It is important if you think that your spouse may have an inheritance, that you gather that information prior to the divorce by way of public record of a probated estate, or by production request, or interrogatories.