As many couples prepare for their wedding, the last issue they want to discuss is prenuptial agreements. Some believe the mere mention of the words signify a level of mistrust or is an indication that a divorce is already part of the plan. However, many view such agreements as a way to avoid future conflicts; preferences regarding financial planning, housing, child care and the like can be discussed and committed to paper before disagreements arise.
Top Reasons to Have a Prenuptial Agreement
If you believe you and your future spouse do not need a prenuptial agreement, you may be right. However, you should reconsider if you fall into one of the following categories:
- Remarriage: Asset division should be predetermined so your first and second (or third) families are properly provided for upon your death.
- Income: If one spouse earns substantially more than the other, decide how family expenses are paid, who stays home with the children or who pays what amount of alimony upon divorce or separation.
- Debt: If one spouse will bring a high debt load into the marriage, determine who will pay it off and who will be responsible if it goes unpaid.
- Wealth: Are you marrying for money, love or a combination of the two?
- Heirlooms: Decide who gets what and when so that family heirlooms can stay with blood relatives.
- Estate Planning: Tax and estate planning can be tricky with all of the changing laws and intricacies of financial planning. Ensure that your estate plan works as intended by creating limits on how it can be changed.
- Business Ownership: If one or both spouses have an interest in a business, determine what happens to ownership interests upon death or dissolution of the marriage.
Although prenuptial agreements are not romantic, creating one as you prepare for your wedding may help you create a marriage that can last a lifetime. If you are already married, you can create a post-nuptial agreement, accomplishing the same objectives.
Source: Prenuptial Agreements, "8 Reasons Why You Should Get A Prenuptial Agreement."
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