For many couples planning to tie the knot, talks about creating a prenuptial agreement can put a damper on the romance of the occasion, and that’s easy to understand. But the truth is that while no one gets married intending to get a divorce down the line, we all know how frequently it happens and how devastating it can be for both parties, particularly from a financial standpoint. Drafting a prenup with assistance from the right prenuptial agreement lawyer can help to safeguard your family financially in the event of a divorce.
So, what exactly is a prenuptial agreement?
Typically addressing how assets will be divided if a marriage ends in divorce, a prenuptial agreement is a documented contract between both parties. When drafted properly and early enough, it can be an effective solution in ensuring that you are protected. Additionally, a prenup is a great way to avoid court proceedings and limit the toll divorce can take on a couple, both emotionally and financially.
What advice do professionals give when it comes to prenuptial agreements?
The main piece of advice given by those in the legal profession is for couples to begin discussing the idea of a prenuptial agreement well in advance of any marriage plans. As unromantic as it may be, it always pays to be realistic about such matters, and being able to talk openly and honestly about a prenup with your partner may even reaffirm how you feel about each other, giving you the confidence to enter the union of marriage with an open mind and complete trust.
Such discussions are also worth having before meeting a prospective life partner. Discussing the idea with friends and family can help normalize the concept and reduce any emotions that may be attached to it. Parents may find it useful to bring up the subject with their children when they reach a certain age, too, helping them understand the implications that may arise from not protecting the wealth and legacy of the family.
What should you consider when drafting a prenup?
Prenups are legally binding documents, and as such, careful consideration should be given as to what information is contained within them. Seeking legal guidance can help you determine what should be included in the agreement and how it should be structured and executed.
Each person should independently list their assets and liabilities before meeting with their chosen legal counsel to be able to discuss which assets will be held separately and which should be treated as marital property. Both parties must provide full disclosure when discussing their assets and liabilities and must decide upon how any property that may be bought during the marriage should be purchased and titled. Think about whether marital funds can be combined to buy assets, how property bought jointly might be divided in the event of divorce, how everyday expenses associated with being a homeowner might be paid, and so on.
By normalizing the conversation surrounding prenuptial agreements, parents, friends, partners, and the betrothed can talk openly about how their assets and financial rights should be protected in the event of a divorce.
To help make sure your prenup includes everything that it should, legal counsel is recommended. From support and advice to drafting the final agreement, having a property lawyer by your side can minimize the stress that often accompanies such discussions and get the document drafted quickly so that the romance can return to your relationship, unabated!