Understanding the Basics of Marital vs. Non-Marital Property Interests

Husband and wife holding pink piggy bank filled with coins to demonstrate a martial property

Although emotionally stressful and financially burdensome, divorce is sometimes necessary. If you’re currently going through a legal separation, you may have heard the phrase “marital property,” but you’re unsure whether certain assets in your name fall under this category.

Marital Property vs. Non-Marital Property:

During your marriage, if you acquired any property or debt (i.e. home, vehicle, business, or children), such assets are considered marital property and may be divided between you and your former spouse by a judge. These assets may also be subject to division if they were acquired before a validation date (see below for more detail).

In comparison, non-marital property is the classification of assets acquired by you prior to the marriage. However, there are three important exclusions that may permit you to classify certain assets as non-marital, even if you obtained the property during the time of your marriage.

These exclusions include:

Gift or Inheritance:

If at any time you were bestowed a gift or inherited an asset(s) from a family member, or other third party, this may be considered a non-marital property—especially if the donation or gift was made in your name and not in your spouse’s.

Obtained After Validation Date:

A validation date is the specified time period when an asset is appraised and given a dollar value for divorce purposes. If you obtained any property after this set date, the property belongs to you. To learn more about how to obtain a validation date in the state of Minnesota, contact KTF Law Firm today!

Prenuptial/Postnuptial Agreement:

In a previous blog post, we discussed the significance of a prenuptial agreement. If you’re currently going through a divorce, then you already understand how prenups can help you classify marital vs. non-marital assets on your own. For example, in the prenup, you and your spouse may have already excluded or divided certain property in the final agreement; therefore, these items will be treated as non-marital interests.

If you possess assets that fall into the aforementioned categories, you’ll need to establish and prove your case to a judge. That’s where KTF Law Firm can help! Our law firm is committed to helping individuals resolve complex dissolution of marriage in a way that protects you and your loved ones’ future. Contact us today to learn more or to schedule a free consultation.