How To Deal with Gifts and Inheritances in Your Separation or Divorce in Ontario!
If you’ve ever wondered about how you deal with gifts in your separation or divorce, the answers are not necessarily straightforward.
Do you get to keep the valuable gifts of money, antiques or furniture that your parents, family members or friends gave you or do you have to give half of them to your former spouse?
Hi, my name is Thomas O’Malley. I’m an experienced family lawyer in Durham Region and the GTA.
In a common-law relationship, you are entitled to keep any physical property that you brought into the relationship as gifts from other people. You get to keep any gifts as well that you receive during the common-law relationship.
You also get to keep any money that you were gifted that you put into your bank account or RRSPs.
You could also probably get any gifted money that you used to pay down a mortgage on a home that is solely in the name of your common-law spouse. For example, if you used gifted money in the amount of $20,000 to pay down a mortgage on your spouse’s home, you can probably make a good claim for that $20,000 payment if your common-law relationship ends.
When you are married, you get to keep any gifts that you received before the marriage. If you received money as a gift and you put it in a bank account or some form investment, you definitely can deduct the value of the gift on the date of marriage.
However, you must include any increase in the value of this investment during the marriage as part of the total value of your investments on the date of separation.
You also get to keep any gifts received during the marriage.
If you receive a gift of money and you mingle it with the funds in a joint bank account or put the money in a mortgage on a residence that you and your spouse both own, then you cannot get that the value for that gifted money now.
The one major exception to the gift rule is that you cannot deduct the value of the matrimonial home that you owned on the date of marriage if you still reside in that same home on the date of separation.
You can avoid this problem with a detailed marriage contract.
If you have any questions about your separation, divorce or family law case and you would like our help, there’s a few ways to contact our office. You can leave a message on my Facebook law office page, visit my website at www.canadiandivorcelegaladvice.com, or call me directly at 905-434-8837.
We would be happy to speak to you.
Oh, by the way, did you know you can protect your family law rights and get essential information on settling your family law issues with your former spouse with the daily indispensable family law advice and tips at my FREE Facebook group?
Click here to find out more: Durham Region Separation and Divorce Legal Support Group
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