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Can marital assets be comingled with non-marital, without impacting them?

Chicago, IL |

Suppose you have $30,000 non-marital assets in a checking and savings account. The checking account with $10,000 non-marital, and savings account with $20,000 non-marital. Then you deposit $1000 marital into the savings account, and pay $1000 in marital bills from the checking account. Do you still have $30,000 in non-marital assets?

Attorney Answers 5

Posted

Actually, from what you have described, there are no non-marital assets as they have all been commingled with marital assets. The non-marital assets, to continue to be non-marital, should have been kept in a separate account. It is now too late.

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James Anthony Palmisano

James Anthony Palmisano

Posted

I disagree. See my answer.

Posted

From the facts described you have effectively commingled the funds which removes the non-marital status. I would recommend you consult with local counsel to discuss further.

You should consult an attorney for advice regarding your individual situation since every case is different and not all information is relayed in an online question. The Law Office of Ophelia Bernal-Mora, P.A. is a divorce and family law firm located in Orlando, Florida. Communication through Avvo does not create an attorney-client relationship. Please do not send any confidential information to our office until such time as an attorney-client relationship has been established.

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James Anthony Palmisano

James Anthony Palmisano

Posted

I disagree, See my answer.

Posted

No, the $30,000 is now all marital property.

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James Anthony Palmisano

James Anthony Palmisano

Posted

I respectfully disagree. See my answer.

Posted

Your actions probably constitute commingling, which makes the account marital property. There may be a way around commingling if the marital money stayed in the account for a very short period of time and then was transferred out of the account. But that may be an uphill climb. Consult with a lawyer, this area of law is tricky.

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Posted

Under Illinois Law when marital and non-marital property are commingled by contributing one estate of property into another resulting in a loss of identity of the contributed property, the classification of the contributed property is transmuted to the estate receiving the contribution. The estate that contributes the property to the other may under certain circumstances may be entitled to reimbursement if the the contribution is clearly retraceable and is not deemed a gift. In your case the fact that you deposied $1,000 into your $20,000 non-marital savings does not make the savings account marital. The account remains your non-marital property subject to a $1,000 reibursement to the marital estate. The $1,000 that you spent on paying marital bills from your non-marital checking account would be considered a gift to the marriage and is lost. In summary, you now have $19,000 of non-marital savings and $9,000 of non-marital checking.

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2 comments

J. Richard Kulerski

J. Richard Kulerski

Posted

I misread the question, and now believe that my initial answer was incorrect. The question is actually very complex and could be a bar exam question. Attorney Palmisano's answer makes a lot of sense, but if his reasoning is correct (and I'm not saying it isn't), wouldn't the non-marital savings account balance now be restored to its original balance of $20,000 (as opposed to $19,000)? A $1,000 withdrawal from the marital account should not be able to cause $2,000 worth of damage to the non-marital accounts, or so it seems. Perhaps the summary would wind up with the following account balances: Non-marital checking - $9,000; Non-marital savings - $20,000; and, Marital account $1,000..

James Anthony Palmisano

James Anthony Palmisano

Posted

Math was never may strong point! Richard Kulerski is right. 20000 + 1000 =21000. After reimbursement to the marital estate of $1,000, the nonmarital savings account now has its original balance of $20,000.

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