No one entering a marriage wants to believe that it will end in divorce. However, the sad reality is that many do end that way. If you or your future spouse has significant assets, is part of a family business, or has a child that must be protected, then a prenuptial agreement might be advised.What is a Prenuptial Agreement
A prenuptial agreement, often called a prenup, is a legal document designed to protect the premarital assets of one or both future spouses.
The issues addressed by a prenup vary from situation to situation. Here are some questions Aretsky Law Group, P.C., lawyers take into consideration when drafting prenuptial agreements:
- Does either party own a business?
- Are there family businesses or assets to protect?
- Does either party have a child from a previous relationship?
- Does either party have college loans or other debt to be considered?
- Does either party own real estate or other property?
- Will either of you inherit a large amount of money or valuable property?
- Are pensions involved?
- Does either have a professional practice?
- Do you want the agreement to expire after a certain amount of time?
- Do you want to include a fidelity clause?
- Is the future spouse with fewer assets and less earning power willing to waive alimony?
The following are important things to keep in mind if you decide that a prenup is right for you:
- Prenuptial agreements must be in writing and must be signed by both parties.
- Both parties must sign the agreement voluntarily. There must be no coercion.
- Both parties must completely disclose their assets and must attach a statement of assets to the agreement.
- How premarital property is handled in case of separation, divorce, death, or other event can be addressed,
- Each party must be given enough time to study and consider the terms of the prenup.
- It is advisable for each party to be represented by independent counsel; however, if you do not wish to retain a lawyer, you may waive that right in writing.
- Child support, child custody, and parenting time issues may not be addressed in a prenup.
- Prenuptial agreements are not valid for those couples who are not married; however, a cohabitation agreement can be drafted instead.
- A prenuptial agreement goes into effect as soon as the couple marries.
- You may include an expiration date. For example, you may stipulate that the agreement will be void after five years of marriage.
If you and your future spouse are considering a prenup, it is important to discuss these issues openly. When drafting a prenuptial agreement, Aretsky Law Group, P.C., attorneys use this process to foster open communication.Contact Our New Jersey Family Law Attorneys
People entering into a marriage often do not have a comprehensive understanding of their partner’s assets and debts. By clearly presenting all the assets the couple brings to a marriage and establishing liabilities and responsibilities, couples are able to enter into marriage with less anxiety.
If you are getting married and have questions about a prenuptial agreement, please contact Aretsky Law Group, P.C. contact us 24/7 at 800-537-4154.