My wife came into the marriage 25 years ago with $200K. The money has remained in her name throughout and consists entirely of marketable securities. Over the years, significant amounts were withdrawn to pay for kids' college and living expenses. The value of her accounts today is about $1 million. Is the entire amount separate property under Ohio law?
I can give you some general guidelines courts follow when defining marital property. Unfortunately, I am not licensed to practice law in Ohio and therefore cannot advise you on the specifics of Ohio law. Most states divide marital property 50/50. They will include premarital assets in the marital pot. However, they will generally place the premarital property over to the spouse who brought it into the marriage. This may also justify a split other than 50/50. Meaning the spouse bringing in the asset will get a greater share of the marital pot. I think you can argue that only the value of the asset at the time of marriage should be set over to your wife. The current value has accrued during the marriage and should be divided between both of you. You can also argue that since funds from the account were used for living expenses and the kids college the asset was comingled and the whole amount should be divided equally. Again, I encourage you to contact an attorney in Ohio to determine exactly how Ohio defines marital and non marital property