When considering how the assets should be shared, it is necessary to ascertain first what the net matrimonial assets consisted of.
“Matrimonial property” is defined as all assets belonging to the parties or either of them at the “relevant date”, which were acquired by them or one of the parties during the marriage but before the “relevant date”. In addition it includes any property acquired before the marriage if it was for use as a family home or as furniture for such a home.
The exception to that rule is assets acquired by way of gift or inheritance from a third party. Such assets are deemed not to be matrimonial property and will be left out of account.
The “relevant date” is the date of the parties’ separation, which is generally considered to be when they stopped living together as man and wife. Matrimonial assets are generally valued at the date of separation, therefore the “relevant date” is very important in considering a divorce or separation under Scots law.
There is an exception to that rule, about valuations of assets which might be transferred by the court.