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ttori

Member
What is the name of your state? California

I have money saved in South Korea before marriage in California. And I'd like to purchase a house in South Korea with that money and was wondering if my husband is still entitled to half of it.
 


Zigner

Senior Member, Non-Attorney
What is the name of your state? California

I have money saved in South Korea before marriage in California. And I'd like to purchase a house in South Korea with that money and was wondering if my husband is still entitled to half of it.
Why do you think he's entitled to any of it?
 

LdiJ

Senior Member
What is the name of your state? California

I have money saved in South Korea before marriage in California. And I'd like to purchase a house in South Korea with that money and was wondering if my husband is still entitled to half of it.
I know that this is not the question you asked, but US citizens and legal residents are required to report foreign assets annually to the IRS, particularly if cash assets exceed $10,000 at all during the year. The penalties are heavy if you do not make the annual reports. You might want to get a consult with a tax professional to make sure that you are in compliance.
 

adjusterjack

Senior Member
What is the name of your state? California

I have money saved in South Korea before marriage in California. And I'd like to purchase a house in South Korea with that money and was wondering if my husband is still entitled to half of it.
Your specific situation may vary but, in general, the money you stashed away in South Korea remains your sole and separate property as long as you don't add anything to if from earnings acquired during your marriage. Buying the house with only that money could also be your sole and separate property as long as you NEVER put a penny of your earnings (during marriage) in to it. Once you use any of your income to support the house (taxes, insurance, maintenance, etc) your spouse gets a community property interest in the equity you build up because your earnings are marital income.

If you want to make sure you don't make any mistakes, consult an attorney about getting a post-nuptial agreement about the house.
 

ttori

Member
I know that this is not the question you asked, but US citizens and legal residents are required to report foreign assets annually to the IRS, particularly if cash assets exceed $10,000 at all during the year. The penalties are heavy if you do not make the annual reports. You might want to get a consult with a tax professional to make sure that you are in compliance.
It's been reported previously!
 

ttori

Member
Your specific situation may vary but, in general, the money you stashed away in South Korea remains your sole and separate property as long as you don't add anything to if from earnings acquired during your marriage. Buying the house with only that money could also be your sole and separate property as long as you NEVER put a penny of your earnings (during marriage) in to it. Once you use any of your income to support the house (taxes, insurance, maintenance, etc) your spouse gets a community property interest in the equity you build up because your earnings are marital income.

If you want to make sure you don't make any mistakes, consult an attorney about getting a post-nuptial agreement about the house.
Thanks for the great advice! I used to work and save money in South Korea. My husband is aware that I have money there but I just wanted to make sure it is my sole property. I don't plan to (or can't afford to) send money over to Korea to add value to it. One more question though, if I rent the house out, is it my income or marital income?
 

ttori

Member
Thanks for the great advice! I used to work and save money in South Korea. My husband is aware that I have money there but I just wanted to make sure it is my sole property. I don't plan to (or can't afford to) send money over to Korea to add value to it.
A couple more questions though, if I rent the house out, is it my income or marital income?
Do I need to change of "form" of asset to IRS although the amount will not change for a while?
 

LdiJ

Senior Member
Thanks for the great advice! I used to work and save money in South Korea. My husband is aware that I have money there but I just wanted to make sure it is my sole property. I don't plan to (or can't afford to) send money over to Korea to add value to it. One more question though, if I rent the house out, is it my income or marital income?
The profit could be considered to be marital, as you will be earning it during your marriage. You also have to report the income (and relevant expenses) on your taxes. You should keep the income separate so that the expenses come out of that income (and not out of any comingled money) before the profit is established.
 

ttori

Member
The profit could be considered to be marital, as you will be earning it during your marriage. You also have to report the income (and relevant expenses) on your taxes. You should keep the income separate so that the expenses come out of that income (and not out of any comingled money) before the profit is established.
"Separating Income/Outcome" wouldn't be complicated our marital income is all in US currency and everything in Korea is done in Korean currency and I am not planning to exchange USD to KRW to add to it.
One question though, if my CPA charges $100 extra to report my Korean asset, do I need to pay for that separately with my sole property?
e.g. CPA charges $500 for tax refund filing, and I mention the property in Korea. He'd ask for $600 altogether to report the property and file tax refund.
 

LdiJ

Senior Member
"Separating Income/Outcome" wouldn't be complicated our marital income is all in US currency and everything in Korea is done in Korean currency and I am not planning to exchange USD to KRW to add to it.
One question though, if my CPA charges $100 extra to report my Korean asset, do I need to pay for that separately with my sole property?
e.g. CPA charges $500 for tax refund filing, and I mention the property in Korea. He'd ask for $600 altogether to report the property and file tax refund.
It wouldn't hurt anything to do so, although I don't really think that its necessary.
 

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