Protecting Your Inheritance Against Divorce In Fort Lauderdale
When a loved one dies, they may pass along significant amounts of money or property to you as their heir or beneficiary. In addition to increasing your own wealth, an inheritance can also ensure financial security for future generations. However, if you end up getting married and eventually filing for a divorce in Fort Lauderdale, it can put your inheritance in jeopardy. It is important to be aware of how Florida divorce laws typically address this issue, as well as some of the strategies that can help to protect your rights.
How Inheritances Are Dealt With In A Fort Lauderdale Divorce
When getting a divorce in Fort Lauderdale, one of the most important issues that need to be addressed concerns the division of marital property and assets. Under Section 61.075 of the Florida Statutes, this includes land, homes, or other types of real estate, as well as household belongings, antiques and family heirlooms, personal belongings, and money in financial accounts.
Anything earned, acquired, or otherwise accumulated during your marriage is generally subject to equitable division. This means that rather than dividing everything equally between you and your spouse, the judge in your case will consider factors such as the length of the marriage, each parties individual income or earning potential, and the amount of premarital assets they possess in determining an agreement that is fair.
Generally, any inheritances you receive would be excluded from property division. However, there are situations in which your inheritance could be a factor:
- If you received it after your marriage and deposited it into your joint account. If your spouse contributed money to this account as well, it can result in commingling of funds, making it difficult to separate your inheritance.
- If you received it prior to marriage, it could be a factor in awarding marital property and may entitle you to a lesser share of other assets.
How To Protect Your Inheritance In The Event Of A Divorce
Keeping your inheritance in a separate account provides a minimal level of protection in the event of a divorce. However, there are better options available:
- Placing your inheritance into an annuity: Kiplinger advises that annuities can protect inheritances and other rights in a divorce by preventing your spouse from having access to them. Any shares awarded would have to be willingly granted and negotiated by you.
- Signing a pre or postnuptial agreement: The best way to protect an inheritance is by having our family law attorney draft a prenuptial agreement before you get married or a postnuptial agreement after the fact. This protects your rights regarding your inheritance and other assets or property in the event of a divorce.
Reach Out to Us Today for Help
Our experienced Fort Lauderdale divorce attorney is dedicated to protecting your rights in sensitive legal matters pertaining to money and relationships. To discuss your options in dealing with an inheritance, call or contact Vanessa L. Prieto online and request a consultation today.