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Reasons for Having a Prenuptial Agreement

Today more and more people are considering prenuptial agreements.  It is no longer the rich and famous who are considering that they should have their significant other sign a prenuptial agreement.  This blog will discuss some reasons for considering a prenuptial agreement.

To start, contemplating whether to create a prenuptial agreement does not mean that your marriage is destined to fail from the beginning.  A prenuptial agreement might actually be a good thing for the marriage.  Creating a prenuptial agreement makes both parties stop and throughly examine their financial affairs. It makes both parties look at what they have in current assets, future assets, and how those assets would be distributed in the even that the marriage ended.  Most people do not find it comfortable to talk about finances with their future spouse, especially if there is a significant difference between the two.  By creating a prenuptial agreement, both are required to fully disclose all their assets.  This up front, in-your-face presentation is probably the only time that either party would be willing to be so forward with their finances.

Some Reasons for Creating a Prenuptial Agreement:

  1. Do you own real estate?
  2. Do you have over $50,000 worth of assets, other than real estate?
  3. Do you currently earn a salary greater than $100,000.
  4. Do you have valuable employment benefits, such as profit sharing plans, stock options, or any other type of vested interest?
  5. Do you have or are you pursuing an advanced degree?
  6. Do you own your own business?

These are some of the basic questions to ask when considering whether to execute a prenuptial agreement.  This list is not exhaustive, but if you can answer yes to any of those questions, you have a good reason for considering a prenuptial agreement.

If you decide that a prenuptial agreement is appropriate for you, you have to start talking to your future spouse about signing one.  If they also think that it would be appropriate, you both should seek separate legal assistance.  Having independent legal assistance is important.  Although, having only one lawyer represent both parties does not mean that the prenuptial agreement would automatically invalid.  It would, however, subject the prenuptial agreement to harsher scrutiny in the event of divorce.  Separate, independent legal assistance is 100% necessary in my opinion.  Independent counsel will do what is in their client’s best interest.  They will also work better with the other party and their attorney to develop a prenuptial agreement that is valid and enforceable.

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