Five Ways to Keep Your Personal Injury Money Safe in Divorce

In Utah, the general rule is that personal injury awards are separate (i.e., non-marital) property. That means you get to keep 100% in the divorce, instead of splitting it with your spouse.

The reason for this is pretty simple: your spouse didn’t contribute to your injury (hopefully), so he or she isn’t entitled to the money you get for your injury.

And while that general rule is pretty clear, you can mess it up and turn your personal injury money from separate to marital property pretty easily.

Here are the top five ways to keep that from happening.

  1. Make sure you’re the only one on your personal injury award check.

Do not let your personal injury attorney cut a check to you and your wife. Only to you.

  1. Put your personal injury money in a separate account only you can access.

Yes, I know, this seems odd, what being married and all, but it’s really, really important. If you put this money in a joint account, the money becomes comingled. Then, when it comes time to divorce and you try to convince a judge that money is yours and yours alone, you’re going to be sorely disappointed.

(Note: most of the time I tell people to put personal injury awards in an investment account or a bank account in an institution completely different than any your spouse has ever used. Be safe.)

  1. Don’t use the money on family stuff.

If you use your money on trips to Disneyland or family cars, there is an argument the money has become marital. Now, if you have the money in a separate account, the money still in the account will probably stay non-marital, but, again, why take the chance?

  1. If you buy stuff with your personal injury award, make sure you’re the only one on the title.

Names on titles doesn’t usually mean much in Utah divorces. The one serious exception is when something is purchased with non-marital money and the spouse is not on the title. So, if you buy a rental property with your money, don’t put your spouse on the title or mortgage, and keep the rental income segregated (segregate everything), then it’s very unlikely a judge will see that rental property as martial property.

  1. Hire a good divorce attorney.

I’ve seen cases involving personal injury money that should never have been shared in the divorce. The reason it was shared: the attorney didn’t know any better and let the client cave when the spouse got aggressive and said he or she would come after the award. A knowledgeable attorney will know how to handle that situation.

Protect Your Money And Your Family

We remove fear associated with divorce, protect your money & maximize time with your kids!

We're here to help. Let's determine your best options.

Call Us 24//7 at 801-685-9999 to Speak with a Live Representative

Utah Divorce FAQs
Top 100 Divorce Blog
What Clients Are Saying…
Brown Family Law
Excellent
4.9
Based on 803 reviews
Overall from start to finish the best experience to have dealing with a time that is difficult.Andrew Christensen is very professional and out going to make this situation the best it could be and worked hard to make sure the divorce was fair for me.Over all, this firm really cares and treats you as a family or friend and just not a client, down to Marco Brown taking time to see how I was doing and offer to help in any way possible during my divorce while I was there for my first initial meeting.I would highly recommend anyone that has to go through a divorce to really reach out to the Brown Family Law firm and see for your self the experience I was able to receive from a top notch law firm.
Response from the owner: Devin, thank you for the kind words. Andrew appreciated the opportunity to help you with your situation.
Sophie was very helpful and explains the process and fees. Thank you!
Response from the owner: Corey, thank you for the kind words. Glad we could help.
My attorney Amy Pomeroy and assistant Melanie and Dani are awesome! It’s an easy case but due to the opposite party was failed to respond, the process went much longer than we expect. During the process Amy gets the necessary job done as quick as she can. The assistants made the most documentation jobs done in a reasonable time. I will get phone call or message to communicate for the status, what’s the next step, what should I expect. In the end, it’s a huge win. So I definitely recommend Brown Family Law. They are professional and handle the case very well.
Response from the owner: Yue, thank you for the kind words. Glad Amy was able to help you so well.
Dani always kept me updated and has great communication skills.
Response from the owner: Thank you, Sofia.
Dani was extremely helpful and always responsive.
Response from the owner: Glad Dani did well for you.
My experience with Brown Family Law is a positive one. I highly recommend them. This firm has very good communication with their clients. Attorney Paul Waldron represents me and I’m very happy with the experience. My questions and concerns are always answered quickly and respectfully. I’m grateful to have Mr. Waldron and Brown Family Law in my corner during this difficult time for my family.
Response from the owner: Jodie, glad we were able to communicate with you so effectively and quickly. Thank you for your kind words.
I recently used Clay in a divorce case and could not have been happier. He was efficient, knowledgeable, and made me feel like I was his only client. The process was easy and he was always there to reassure me or help me with decisions. I would highly recommend Brown Family Law.
Response from the owner: Thank you, Mendi.
Dani excelled as a paralegal, providing crucial support with exceptional skills!
Response from the owner: Glad Dani did such a good job for you.
Thank you So much
Response from the owner: You're welcome. Thank you for choosing us to help you.
I highly recommend Nathaniel and his team. They listened to me, navigated me, educated me, and always called when they said they would. Going through a divorce was very hard but they helped me get through it and showed compassion the whole time.
Response from the owner: Amy, thank you for your recommendation, and glad we could help you through your divorce.
js_loader

Categories