You may have heard that the property you bring to a second marriage will still be yours in the event of a future divorce. Unfortunately, this isn't always true.
It is a general rule that assets acquired before your marriage are your separate property, while assets accumulated during your marriage are marital property and are subject to equitable division. However, there are many things that can happen during your marriage that can cause separate property to become marital property.
Here are a few examples:
- If you add your spouse's name to a checking or savings account, the account and the money in it may become marital property.
- If you deposit your separate money into a joint checking or savings account, it may become marital property.
- If you add your spouse's name to the deed of your house, the house may become marital property.
- If your spouse contributes to home repairs or mortgage payments, a portion of the house may be marital property.
- If you die without a will, at least half of your property may go to your spouse by Georgia's law of intestate succession.
If you want to keep the assets you bring to a second marriage, it's important to keep the assets separate and to keep good records. If your marriage ends in divorce, assets will be assumed to be marital property unless you can prove they are your separate property.
Marital property division is complex and depend on your particular circumstances. What was true for a family member or friend may not be true in your case. To protect your interests, it's important to get answers from an experienced family law attorney.