If my inheritance from my mother was put into an investment account with my wife as a joint tenant, doeshave rights to half the money?

UPDATED: Sep 19, 2011

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If my inheritance from my mother was put into an investment account with my wife as a joint tenant, doeshave rights to half the money?

My mother passed away 13 years ago.I received an inheritance ($80,000) and I placed the funds into an investment account and used joint tenancy with my wife. I have discovered that she has had multiple adulterous relationships and I also discovered she contracted an STD (herpes). When we divorce, since the account is joint tenancy, does she have rights to half of the funds? After receiving the funds, we intended to use that money for college funds for our daughters (now 28 and 20 years old). I am willing to continue to pay for college for my youngest child.

Asked on September 19, 2011 under Family Law, Georgia


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

If you received money from your mother as an inheritance, that money was your own separate property under the laws of Georgia to do as you wanted. When you placed this money in a joint tenancy account in your and your wife's names, you gave her a one-half (1/2) interest in the money given the joint tenancy designation in the investment account.

Given this designation, your current wife has a one-half interest (1/2) in this account. If you do not change the joint tenancy designation of this account to your own separate property out of the joint tenancy designation and you pass away, your wife receives the entire account for herself.

If you have retained a family law attorney, I suggest that you discuss with him or her this investment account issue.

Good luck.



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