Does Your Spouse Have A Marital Interest In Your Inherited Property In A West Virginia Divorce?

If one is going through a divorce in West Virginia, sometimes couples have to deal with inherited property that occurred during that time they were married. If this ever is the case, the common question becomes whether inherited property is considered to be a marital property or under what circumstances it could become marital property? An example would be that a piece of property is inherited from somebody during the time the couple was married. It could be from a parent, brother or sister, it might be somebody else, but someone inherited a piece of property such as a land and or a house. In this example it could also be personal property such as guns and jewelry and things of that sort. At this point, the general rule is that this is considered to be separate property. If one inherits a piece of property and gets that property, then that is usually going to be considered separate property even if married during that time..

The same thing applies with guns and personal property, jewelry, anything of that sort that one actually inherits. Now, inherited property can become marital property or it can have what is called a marital component to it under certain circumstances. A very clear circumstance of when a marital component is involved would be if one put the other spouse’s name on the property. If one inherits a piece of property, then usually what will happen is once that property is inherited, that is considered separate property. However, if the deed to property is put into both of the spouse’s names, then it becomes what is called marital property.

Now, the other circumstance where a marital component could be involved with the inherited property would be a situation where someone has borrowed against the property. For example, one of the spouse’s borrowed a hundred thousand dollars and took that money out and started paying down the loan they took out. Under those circumstances, the property could take on a marital component. The extent the debt is paid down is associated with the property, whether it’s in either name. Even if one pays down a debt, but that debt was acquired during the marriage, then that inherited property now could potentially be considered to be marital property.