7 Facts About Prenuptial Agreements You Should Know

by Frank

You and your partner are in love and plan to marry. You may be thinking about asking your partner to agree to a prenuptial agreement, also called a prenup. You may be asked to sign a prenuptial agreement. A prenuptial agreement is a legal contract between you and your intended spouse to determine what happens in the event of a divorce. A divorce is the end of a marriage. Prenuptial agreements require each person to disclose all money, property and assets owned. They also outline each right and responsibility each person has such as how property is divided during a divorce. The contract must be made prior to marriage. States have laws involving how property if a marriage ends.

However, courts recognize valid prenuptial agreements if they are different from state laws. This allows you and your spouse to divide property and assets without a divorce judge making the decision. You have to follow all prenuptial agreement rules for the contract to be valid. For instance, prenuptial agreements require full disclosure. If you are not honest and hide any assets, the agreement is voided. You and your intended spouse must have separate attorneys during prenup negotiations to make sure both party’s interests are heard. Both you and your spouse must enter into the contract without being coercion. This means that you cannot be forced to make a prenuptial contract if you do not want one. All prenuptial agreements must be fair and equitable. For instance, you cannot have a prenuptial agreement where you get all property and assets in a divorce and your spouse receives nothing. This is would make the agreement invalid. If you and your partner are thinking about getting married, contact an attorney. The following information are things included in prenuptial agreements:

1.Separate Properties

Property is defined as any money, house, jewelry or assets owned separately or jointly. In marriage, property is separated into two types: marital and separate. Marital property is property obtained during the marriage and owned by you and your spouse. This is what is divided during your divorce. Separate properties are any type of property that is owned by one spouse. The property is acquired prior to marriage. The property can also be anything you acquire after you separate from your spouse prior to obtaining a divorce. It cannot be divided or given to your spouse in a divorce. Prenuptial agreements allow you to determine what will be marital property and what will be solely owned by you after your divorce. For instance, you can protect your future inheritance, family business or family heirloom that is considered separate property. A prenuptial agreement also allows you to pass separate properties to your children from a prior marriage in the event that you divorce or die. Without a prenuptial agreement, your children from a prior marriage may not get your separate property. Your intended spouse may have the right to claim the bulk of your property if you die during the marriage. If you need legal assistance you can also find additional legal aid here and you can search for a lawyer here.

2. Jointly Owned Property

Jointly owned property is defined as the legal right given to more than one person to ownership of a particular property. This gives you and another person the legal right to own the same property. One example of jointly owned property is a owned by spouses. You cannot sell the property without the approval of the other person. Type of jointly owned property include joint tenancy with rights of ownership. This is type of joint property means that if one owner dies, their portion of their property goes to the surviving owner. Community property is property owned by spouses married to each other. Tenancy by the entirety gives the rights of survivorship to the surviving spouse.

3. Predetermination

State laws determine how marital issues will be resolved during a divorce. These marital issues include alimony, property division and child custody. However, prenuptial agreements allow you to make a predetermination about how these issues will be resolved if you actually get divorced. For instance, you and your future spouse may predetermine that you will pay alimony, which is financial support given to a spouse, if the marriage lasts more than three years. Predeterminations make it easier for you and your future from having to make these decisions during a divorce when emotions may be high.

4. Estate Plan

Estate planning is the act of deciding what happens to your property after you die. You can also determine where your property will go, what will happen to minor children and any health care issues while you are alive. You can also include prenuptial agreement in your estate planning. This helps to ensure your spouse abides by your final wishes regarding how your property will be distributed after your death.

5. Special Arrangements

Prenuptial agreements are a written contract between you and your intended spouse. However, you can also include any special agreements between you and your future spouse. Special agreements are any type of arrangement between you and your future spouse. An example of a special agreement is outlining what happens if you and your spouse purchase more than two cars during the marriage. You may agree that you both will receive one vehicle. All special agreements, which must be legal to be enforceable, must be in writing.

6. Divorce Process

A divorce process is a legal process to end the marriage. The process starts with a divorce petition. A divorce petition is a written document completed by a spouse, called a petitioner. The document is then served to their spouse. The spouse receiving the divorce papers is called the respondent. After the document is filed at the county courthouse, the divorce process officially begins. The spouses can have their divorce decided by a judge or they can decide what their own marital issues. Once all the issues are resolved, a judge will grant the divorce. After the divorce is granted, both spouses are single.

7. Debt

Debt is the amount of money you owe to creditors. The debt may include credit card payments, student loans, payday loans and lines of credit. In a prenuptial agreement, you and your spouse can determine who pays the debts incurred prior and during the marriage. For example, you may determine that each spouse will be responsible for their own debts incurred prior to marriage. You may also determine that any debts incurred during the marriage will be paid by each spouse.