InNew Jersey, the general rule is that inheritances are considered separate property and not subject to division in the event of divorce. However, there are numerous exceptions to the general rule.

In the event of a divorce, inherited funds may be subject to division if it was comingled or if the bequeathed gift was converted for a marital use. For instance, placing inherited funds in a joint account, which draws interest, may warrant a division of the funds between you and your spouse. Furthermore, utilizing inherited funds for a shared marital purpose may also warrant a court to divide the resources between you and your spouse. Inherited property may also be subject to division in the event of a divorce if the property increased in value due to contribution from you and your spouse. Another example may occur if marital funds are utilized on a regular basis to maintain tax and maintenance payments in connection with an inherited property. These are just a few of the exceptions.

Finally, keep in mind that although an inheritance is separate property gifted to you, a court may consider your inherited wealth when determining support and equitable distribution issues such as the allocation of debt and assets and other issues.

If you received an inheritance, it is best to speak to an attorney about avoiding distribution of an inheritance with your spouse in the event of a divorce.  Contact one of the attorneys at Iandoli & Edens, LLC to assist you.