One of the most common questions we receive about divorce is whether or not inheritance must be divided in Texas. Although the answer is typically “no,” it depends on how you manage your inheritance during your marriage.
Is Your Inheritance Considered Community Property in Texas?
Texas is one of the few states to follow the community property rule when it comes to dividing marital property between spouses. Community property means that most property acquired during a marriage belongs to both spouses.
Texas also includes rules for separate property or assets acquired before the marriage or gifts received by one spouse during the marriage. This is where your inheritance fits as it’s received by you, separate from your spouse. If you receive an inheritance and refrain from commingling funds, it will be safe from division during divorce.
Don’t Commingle Your Inheritance With Marital Funds
Commingling is defined as mixing or blending your inheritance funds with marital funds. For example, you may use inheritance money to pay off marriage debts. Or, you may place your inheritance into a shared bank account with your spouse. If you commingle your inheritance, it becomes community property eligible for division.
For example, if you receive a $100,000 inheritance from your grandmother and use $30,000 as a down payment on a marital home, the inheritance is no longer separate property. To help protect your inheritance, we recommend placing it in a separate bank account under your name.
What happens if you didn’t intend to share your inheritance funds? In some rare cases, courts may find that a portion of your inheritance can remain separate property. Yet, proving this mistake is complex and requires the assistance of a professional divorce attorney.
Call an Experienced Divorce Attorney Today for Help
Are you facing a divorce? Are you concerned you’ll lose your inheritance if you move forward?
Going through a divorce is already difficult without worrying about your finances. An experienced divorce attorney can help. To learn more about inheritance and divorce or to speak with an attorney today, give us a call at 817-789-4436 or send us a message.