The negative perception associated with prenuptial agreements prevents many couples from having such conversations, including the legal benefits of signing one before marriage. According to several legal professionals, a prenuptial agreement is important because it addresses issues such as finances, property division, debt, and interfaith conflicts in the event of a divorce.
Firstly, a prenuptial agreement opens up open communication lines even before the couple ties the knot. Being able to have genuine conversations with your partner is one of the basic foundations of a long-lasting marriage. The ability to discuss not-so-easy subjects can help you learn a lot before the marriage begins.
Secondly, a well-drafted prenup agreement by a prenuptial agreement lawyer is fundamental, especially if you have kids prior to the marriage. It enables you to separate some assets to be passed to your children in the event of a divorce. Last but not least, a prenup agreement makes things easier if a divorce happens. It eliminates conflicts with asset division, debt and finances because it defines the marital property.
For those reasons, a prenuptial agreement is a legal document; therefore, it should be carefully executed by a prenuptial agreement lawyer. Check out some of the dos and don’ts of a prenup you should know.
Don’t sign a prenup agreement without legal counsel
Couples should execute prenuptial agreements in consideration of the state domestic relations laws. Otherwise, the court will eventually consider it mandatory to decide if the prenuptial agreement is valid based on:
- Whether there was full disclosure of property and liabilities.
- Whether the terms of the agreement were reasonable and fair at the time of the agreement.
- Whether everyone was aware of what they were potentially giving up when signing the prenup agreement.
- Whether it was signed voluntarily.
If any of the conditions mentioned above were not fulfilled, the court could declare the prenup agreement invalid. When signing a prenuptial agreement, it is wise to have independent legal counsel such as the Musson law to review the terms and fully understand what you are signing for.
Do consider your marital rights before signing a prenup.
Marriage potentially changes your financial rights, personal property, and real estate. As such, many couples seek prenuptial agreements to negate or modify some legal implications of marriage. It helps them create a legal relationship that works for both of them after their marriage. You can address many of your marital arights in a prenup agreement, including:
- Property division upon divorce or death.
- Ownership of debts and liabilities.
- Financial protection of kids from previous relationships etc.
Don’t discuss child custody or support in a prenup
It is advisable to avoid any provisions to do with child custody and support in a prenup. Only the court can determine child custody and support conditions after determining the kids’ best interests. The court doesn’t consider terms related to child custody in a prenuptial agreement.
Discuss the dos and don’ts of a prenuptial agreement with an experienced family lawyer beforehand to understand and prepare for the legal implications of signing it. Having independent counsel when signing a prenup helps protect your interests.