In today’s society, prenuptial agreements are becoming more common, especially among younger couples getting married. Prenuptial agreements may seem strange at first, but they have a lot of advantages that can make your marriage stronger and your life easier in the long run.
Here are five tips for drafting an effective prenuptial agreement.
- Understand Why You Need the Agreement
If you’re getting married, then you probably assume your relationship will last forever. But that’s not always how things turn out.
According to recent U.S. Census data, about 40 percent of marriages end in divorce or separation within 15 years, and 50 percent end within 20 years.
If you’ve spent time building your business and have significant assets to protect, creating the agreement can protect those assets in case your marriage doesn’t work out as expected.
And don’t think an agreement is only needed if you’re wealthy – anyone who has significant assets, either individually or through business ownership or inheritance, should consider creating one.
- Have Your Lawyers Look at It
Before signing any agreement, it’s crucial to get an outside perspective on its terms and language. Some provisions in these agreements can be open to interpretation, which is why it’s always best to have your lawyers review your documents before you sign.
Have them look over everything and make sure you fully understand every single aspect of what you’re signing. This can help protect both parties later on down the road if there are any disputes regarding assets or alimony.
If your partner feels as though they had little say in drawing up an agreement they didn’t feel was fair, they may find ways to undermine it down the line—such as by challenging its validity during divorce proceedings—which would ultimately harm both parties involved.
- Consider How the Agreement Might Affect the Children
A prenup can also include information about how any children will be cared for, such as custody arrangements and financial support.
If you’re creating an agreement that involves issues with your children, make sure to speak with an attorney familiar with family law.
- Understand the Other Party’s Rights
In some states, prenups can even be challenged during divorce proceedings if they fail to meet certain criteria (for example, having been signed under duress or without legal representation).
The important thing is that you understand what’s in your agreement and how it will affect your life, not just now but potentially down the road. Your future self will thank you for it.
- Get Different Attorneys
It is highly recommended that you get two attorneys to draft your agreement. One attorney should be your primary attorney, and one should be a second, different attorney.
It is likely that you will know or have a relationship with both attorneys, but getting two separate attorneys gives an extra layer of protection to each spouse in case one attorney decides not to act in good faith.
The benefits of having two separate attorneys instead of working with just one far outweigh any monetary concerns about hiring more than one.
Instead of having only one set of eyes on your prenup, you now have two sets – doubling your odds against something going wrong.
In conclusion, there are many things to keep in mind when drafting a prenuptial agreement.
A couple should take care not to create an agreement that is too complicated or comprehensive, and they should always consult with an experienced family law attorney such as Viola Law Firm prior to signing one.