Reasons Why You Should Make a Prenuptial Agreement.
There are a number of reasons why a couple may wish to make a prenuptial agreement. Some are seeking to protect their assets, while others simply want to ensure that financial responsibilities are clearly defined. Regardless of your reasons, a prenuptial agreement is an important document to have in place before getting married.
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A Prenuptial Agreement is a contract that outlines the property and debts of each spouse, as well as how those properties should be handled if the couple separates or dies. It is typically signed by both parties, though a divorce lawyer may be needed to review the document.
Many couples decide to have a prenuptial agreement because they are concerned that they may face legal issues in the future, or if they have a lot of assets or a high net worth, they wish to protect themselves from their spouse. The decision to get a prenuptial agreement is often made after the couple has been together for several years and has decided that it is time to start planning their life together.
Some of the most common reasons to have a prenuptial agreement are as follows:
The spouses’ financial responsibilities: This is particularly helpful for couples who plan on making significant investments in the future, such as buying a home or starting a business. A prenuptial agreement can provide clarity to the couple on their financial responsibilities, especially those that require a greater commitment to money than most couples are comfortable with.
Protection for children from previous marriages: This is another great reason to have a prenuptial agreement, as it can ensure that the couple’s separate property is protected in the event of a subsequent divorce or death. In addition, if the couples have children from prior marriages, it can be beneficial to include provisions that will provide them with an inheritance of some portion of the couple’s estate.
A Prenuptial Agreement can also be a great way to protect your spouse from debts, such as student loans or credit card debts. A good prenuptial agreement will specify how any incurred debts will be paid off post-divorce.
Define separate property: This is one of the most important parts of any prenuptial agreement. The agreement must clearly define which of the property brought to the marriage is a separate property from which it becomes marital property and should be kept as such during and after the marriage.
Avoid incentives for divorce: In many cases, a judge will look at whether the prenuptial agreement gives a monetary incentive for the marriage to break up, such as waiving maintenance payments or limiting child support payments. A prenuptial agreement that includes a waiver of maintenance can be problematic, as it is likely to be reviewed by the court at a later date, and the amount of support will be adjusted accordingly.
The prenuptial agreement must be signed by both parties independently and voluntarily, and there should be sufficient time for both parties to consult their own lawyers. Otherwise, a judge may find that the prenuptial agreement was not properly executed and may not uphold it.