When most people think of prenuptial agreements, they think of the overdramatized situations of an older man forcing a younger woman to sign away her rights to the marital estate before a wedding. However, in actuality, prenuptial agreements are useful tools for future spouses to protect their interests when entering a marriage, especially if one or both people have significant nonmarital assets or debts. If you are about to get married and already have children, a prenuptial agreement can also help protect their interests in your new marriage.
What is a Prenuptial Agreement?
A prenuptial agreement is a contract written up between two people before they get married. This agreement typically lists the assets and debts that each spouse is bringing to the marriage and specifies what will happen to the property in the situation that the marriage ends. Prenuptial agreements can serve a number of purposes, including protection of assets for children from another partner or spouse, clarification of financial rights, protection from debts, and more. A family law attorney can review your and your future’ spouses current financial situation and draft a prenuptial agreement that protects you, your future spouse, and your children.
How can a Prenuptial Agreement Protect Your Children?
In situations in which you are remarrying and bringing children from another partner or spouse, a prenuptial agreement can be critical in protecting assets that you want to ensure are passed along to your kids. Having a will and an estate plan can protect these interests for when you pass away; however, a prenuptial agreement also protects those interests if your marriage ends.
The prenuptial agreement circumvents arguments down the road about the distribution of certain marital or nonmarital property because both spouses agreed to the set aside of assets for the children prior to the marriage and signed the prenuptial agreement, legally binding the decision.
One of the best features of a prenuptial agreement is that it can protect literally any type of asset you want to reserve for your children, including unique collections, cash, jewelry, real estate, or family businesses. The more detailed the agreement, the better protected your children’s assets will be.
A prenuptial agreement also supports a will and estate plan when there is ambiguity in the will. The prenuptial agreement can serve as strong additional evidence as to whom should get certain property from the estate. Finally, a prenuptial agreement also protects your children from assuming your spouse’s liabilities if you are entering a marriage with debts. A prenuptial agreement can make it clear who is responsible for paying certain debts in the case of death or divorce.
Call a Family Law Attorney Today
A family law attorney in your area can answer all the questions you have about prenuptial agreements and help you draft an agreement that protects the rights of your children during your marriage. Call or contact our office today.