Can an inherited asset be split in a divorce?

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Can an inherited asset be split in a divorce?

I presently own a 40 acre parcel of hunting land. On the deed are my 2 brothers and I. Can I quitclaim my 1/3 share to my brothers, so my wife cannot take 1/2 of my share? The land was originally purchased prior to my marriage by my father. We inherited it when my father passed away.

Asked on November 21, 2011 under Family Law, Wisconsin

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

An inheritance is deemed to be separate property. And separate property is not divided in a divorce. In other words, this property is not a marital assets subject to division. So no matter when you were married, your inherited property will remain yours. Your wife will have no claim on it.

That having been said, such property should be keep apart from any joint property. If separate property is "co-mingled" (i.e. mixed) with marital property it can "transmute" (i.e. change into) a marital asset. If that happens, it then would be capable of being divided between the parties.


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