“Well, I got injured and did all the suffering – it’s my money.”
Sounds simple, should be simple, but so long as we have legislators, judges, attorneys and husbands and wife going through the emotional turmoil of a divorce, nothing is going to stay simple for long.
First we’ll take a brief look at how the property pie has been divided and what those pieces represent. We’ll not be specifically talking about personal property versus real property. Here when we say personal, we’re just talking about the person – the human being.
Separate property is that property that belongs to just one of the spouses. E.g. Six years into a marriage, husband buys a sports car and he’s the only one that drives it, maintains it, calls it his own and even named it “Streak.” Another six years go by and it’s divorce time – too much fun with Streak on Saturday nights. Husband’s separate property, right? Wrong!
Marital property is that property that belongs to both the husband and wife. E.g. A couple gets married – they both have about the same salaries and divide up all living expenses. Included in the wife’s share are all the bills for the house that she had inherited. They share all day to day expenses. He does all his household chores including the yard work. They’re happily married for 20 years and then wife falls in love with the computer tech and its divorce time. The house is marital property, right? Wrong!
Separate property is that which is completely identified to one of the spouses. Such property could be anything that one spouse brought into the marriage that the other spouse never touched, e.g. an investment account held separate from all other marital finances.