Separate Property Is Property That You Own That Is Not Marital Property
Video Transcribed: What is separate property in an Oklahoma divorce? I’m Tulsa attorney James Wirth with Wirth Law Office in Tulsa, and I’m answering frequently asked questions regarding family law issues. And that’s the question is, “What is separate property in a divorce?” Okay, so separate property is property that you own that is not marital property.
Anything that is not marital, and it is yours, not your spouse’s, is separate property. But that may not be the property that you think, because anything that you come into during the marriage, for the most part, by default is marital.
So the things that are separate property is property that you owned prior to the marriage, property that was gifted to you during the marriage, solely to you during the marriage, and property that you inherited during the marriage. So those things start off as separate property, but they can transmutate into marital property if you’re not careful.
So once you have those things that are separate property, you’ve got to handle them right. Meaning you have to keep them solely in your name. Don’t put your spouse’s name on any of it, or there’s going to be a presumption that it’s an interspousal gift, then it becomes marital property.
And also, you cannot put any of your marital assets into it. So if you’ve got a bank account that you own prior to the marriage, or you’ve got a money market account, or stocks and all of that, keep it separate.
Don’t contribute to it during the marriage, because anything you’re earning or money that you’re getting during the marriage, it’s marital. If you contribute to those separate accounts with marital funds, then you’ve comingled them. And then that asset may be determined by the court to have been comingled to the extent that it transmutated into marital property, so avoid that.
So hope that answers your question on what separate property is. It is property owned prior to the marriage, property that you inherited, and property that was gifted solely to you that did not get comingled and did not transmutate into marital property. If you’ve got questions about your specific circumstances, You can talk to an Tulsa family attorney to speak on your Oklahoma Divorce by going to makelaweasy.com.