Separate Property

Last Updated: May 7, 2018

Definition - What does Separate Property mean?

A separate property is a property owned by one party in a marriage. Under the distribution of properties during divorce, the separate property immediately goes to one spouse and gets differentiated from the properties they share with the other party in the marriage.

Insuranceopedia explains Separate Property

In a state that observes community property law, a property is either a community property or a separate property. The former means that it jointly belongs to the married couple. The latter means that it is exclusively owned by one party.

A separate property can be an inheritance, a property acquired prior to the marriage, a gift, or something declared as a separate property by the married couple. Once the marriage is terminated, the separate property automatically belongs to the spouse who is its rightful owner. The rest of the properties are distributed to both parties.

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