Photo of Lisa Standish

Experienced And
Practical Legal Counsel

  1. Home
  2.  » 
  3. Family Law
  4.  » Is an inheritance considered a marital asset in Pennsylvania?

Is an inheritance considered a marital asset in Pennsylvania?

On Behalf of | Jul 2, 2024 | Family Law |

When you’re going through a divorce, knowing how the court will divide your assets will really help you make smart choices. One common concern is whether an inheritance received during the marriage counts as a marital asset, subject to division.

What defines a marital asset?

In Pennsylvania, marital assets are generally those acquired by either spouse during the marriage, up to the date of separation. These typically include wages, homes purchased during the marriage, and retirement accounts. The distinction of assets into marital and non-marital categories plays a crucial role in divorce proceedings.

The status of inheritance in divorce

However, the law treats inheritances differently. If you received an inheritance before or during your marriage, the law usually considers it separate property as long as you kept it distinct from marital funds. This means that if you deposited the inheritance into a joint account or used it towards a marital home, it could get classified as marital property. 

Mediation and collaborative law

Opting for mediation or collaborative law can be a transformative choice. These methods promote cooperation and empower you to make decisions beneficial to all parties involved. Through these approaches, you can discuss and resolve the treatment of inheritances with transparency and mutual respect.

Doing so sets a positive tone for future interactions. This is particularly valuable in divorces where preserving relationships is crucial, such as when children are involved.

Toward a cooperative future

Exploring alternative dispute resolutions like mediation can open the door to amicable settlements and a hopeful outlook for your post-divorce life. By understanding and utilizing these less confrontational paths, you pave the way for a resolution that respects both individual needs and shared histories. Doing so makes it possible to start anew with a strong foundation.