Getting Married? 4 Things To Know About Premarital Agreements

Law Blog

With the average age of when people first get married going up, more and more people are entering marriage with assets and debts, which is why one should consider having a premarital, or prenuptial agreement in place before signing a marriage document. This will help protect the best interests of both parties if the marriage doesn't last.

You Have to Fully Disclose Your Assets

If you want to enter into a prenuptial agreement, you are going to have to fully disclose your assets in the document. You are going to need to list all your assets, from the vehicles and property you own, to the retirement accounts and savings that you have built up. The only way to protect the assets that you had before entering your marriage is by listing them. If you fail to list your retirement assets, for example, they could be considered a martial asset and be something that you have to split down the road. If you now that you may be expecting a sizable inheritance at some point, that should be disclosed as well. The idea with a premarital agreement is that you are aware of the assets that both of you bring into the marriage, and that you know who will get those assets should the marriage dissolve in the future.

Have Your Own Attorney

Next, you need to have your own attorney to go over the agreement. Even though you are entering into the agreement together, both of you need an attorney who is looking after your best interests to review the document. Do not use the same attorney; their interest could be influenced by their personal relationship with both of you or by whomever is footing the bill.

Plan the Prenup Out

You need to bring up the idea of a prenup long before you are set to get married. In fact, in many states, if you wait to present the prenup until right around the date of your wedding, and you get divorced later, the prenup could be thrown out because one party did not have adequate time to consider the prenup before signing it. This should not be a rushed processed, it should be a thought-out process that you work through together.

Setting up Alimony

Next, a prenup is not just about establishing what assets belongs to you before you got married. It is about establishing what you will do with your assets that you accumulate through marriage if you get divorced. You can't predict the future, but you can determine if the assets would be evenly split or if they would not be evenly split and provide a reasoning and rational for this choice. You can also determine if alimony will be waived, which means neither of you will have to pay alimony in the event of a divorce. You can't waive future child support though, so don't try to add that to the agreement. Child support is about your child, not your spouse.

If you are bringing assets into a marriage, talk to your partner about a prenuptial agreement. Take the time to draft a thoughtful agreement and have each side work with a different attorney to review the agreement before you sign it. A prenuptial agreement is about protecting yourself and planning ahead. For more information, contact law firms like the Law Offices Of James Jackson.


3 September 2019