Marital property is property acquired after the parties are married. Property acquired before the marriage is considered the individual and separate property of the acquiring spouse and the court will have no authority to distribute individual property when the marriage is dissovled.
However, if the property was inherited or given as a gift to one spouse from a thrid party, after the marriage, it is still considered separate property. Conversely, if property was acquired before the marriage by one spouse but has risen in value due to the efforts and/or labor of the other or both spouses, the appreciated value is considered marital property.
Definition from Nolo’s Plain-English Law Dictionary
Property that is considered under state law to be owned by both spouses. In community property states, all income earned and property acquired during marriage is marital (community) property. In other states, whether property is considered marital property depends on how it is titled and sometimes, other factors. Most states exclude inheritances from marital property.
Definition provided by Nolo’s Plain-English Law Dictionary.
August 19, 2010, 5:19 pm