A prenuptial agreement is a contract between two fiancés who want to agree on how to handle their finances and property during and after their marriage. Once you marry, your spouse automatically receives a wide range of rights, and some of those rights supersede your will. A prenup may protect you, your children and your business from disruption, argument and sometimes, all-out war. For couples who have businesses, property or children from a prior marriage – it is strongly recommended to consider the benefits of a prenup.
Seven Things a Prenup Agreement will Protect:
Protect your children from a prior relationship after you remarry
When drafting your prenuptial agreement you are able to designate who will administer your estate in the event of your death. You can also include a waiver so you can choose who receives your retirement assets as well as waive the right for certain death benefits (like a widow’s allowance). Other major benefits include protecting your estate as you age, along with other legal estate documents like a power of attorney and will. You’re also able to protect your children’s future inheritance for the full value of your property.
Protect your business and business partners
If you own a business prior to or start one during the marriage, a prenuptial agreement will ensure that asset will remain yours should the marriage dissolve. In the event of a divorce, the prenup protects your business records, partners and employees from disruption or being dragged into the divorce process. Another benefit is that as you age, you can avoid your spouse battling your children for control of your business.
If you die or divorce without a prenup, your business partners may then have a new partner-your spouse! In this event, your partner would have to be bought out to regain your stake in the business! These are just a few of the reasons a prenup is extremely important for business owners.
Protect your family land and family-owned businesses
A prenup works to protect family land, houses, and business interests and ensure it stays within the family so your loved ones won’t ever have to fight your spouse for these assets.
Protect yourself from your spouse’s personal or business debts
A prenup will not protect you from the creditors, but it will make your spouse take responsibility for their debt. If you divorce, you may keep more marital property because you would not be responsible for the liability of your spouse’s debt.
Avoid expensive and public court proceedings after divorce or spouse’s death
A prenup is cheaper than a contested divorce. There are fewer issues when a prenup is completed, which mean less attorney’s fees and court time. There is clarity because your spouse’s signature shows what your spouse intended for you to receive which simplifies the entire process.
Control your own money
With a prenup in place, you are free to buy, sell and borrow against property in your own name and you choose your beneficiaries.
Starts candid conversations with your fiancé about property and income
In the event of divorce or death, it’s very important that you both understand the other’s property and wishes. A prenuptial agreement acts as a catalyst to start this important conversation. During the process, your both required to disclose your assets and debts prior to the marriage. This may seem like something you can handle on your own. But it isn’t uncommon for spouses to leave out a debt without a prenup. This is often due to embarrassment, and assume they can pay it down before their partner finds out – which rarely goes as planned! A prenup legally requires you to disclose them. You will also gain clarity on who pays alimony if you divorce, and how much that would be.
In the event of death, your spouse will know what your children receive when you die and your children will know what your spouse will receive when you die. After losing a loved one, the last thing you want to do is dispute a will.
These are the major benefits of having a prenuptial agreement before you get married. If you have questions with a prenup in Raleigh, the Triangle Divorce Lawyers are great and would love to help you. They help couples craft a prenuptial that fits their specific needs and goals. This is something we recommend to many of our clients. Make sure you don’t forget this very important, often overlooked, part of wedding planning!