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Commingled funds affect property division in high-asset divorces

When people get married, they rarely assume that the marriage will one day end in divorce. Most couples begin to share everything right from the start, including their separate property. For example, if you earn more than your spouse, you might routinely use your income to pay your spouse’s bills.

While sharing your wealth is generous, it could harm you financially in a divorce. Mixing your money with your spouse’s is known as commingling funds, and it can make an already complicated high-asset divorce even more challenging.

What are some other examples of commingling funds?

Along with paying your spouse’s bills with your money, here are some other examples of commingling funds:

  • Depositing your earnings in to joint bank or investment accounts that you share with your spouse
  • Depositing any inheritance money you receive in to joint bank accounts
  • Using your money as well as your spouse’s money to purchase real estate or other high-value items

Illinois is an equitable distribution state. In simple terms, this means that family courts seek to divide marital property in a fair (but not necessarily equal) manner. For most couples divorcing in Chicago, commingling of funds has already happened.

Although commingled funds will further complicate your high-asset divorce, you can protect your wealth. In many cases, an experienced lawyer can help ensure that you lose as little of your assets as possible without compromising your spouse’s right to acquire a fair settlement.

We invite you to continue exploring our family law website for additional information about protecting your assets and other interests in divorce.