Has your fiancé just asked you to sign up for a prenuptial agreement? Is this the reason you are upset? Well, experts believe that this must be done before the couple ties knot and walks down the aisle. There is no need for you to get upset because this contract is separate from the emotional decisions. You can say it is more like a necessity for every couple. It’s a legal agreement that is separate from your romance and love entailed with the relationship.

We see that there is a common perception among people hearing about the phrase pre-nup. They think it is just for the wealthy tycoons or rich celebrities. But ask yourself this; don’t middle class people require protection of their assets? Yes, all couples require that. So, why hesitate in signing up for the prenuptial agreement? It is just a simple document that is required to be signed by you and your partner-to-be from any unexpected or unpredictable situation in the future.

Prenuptial Agreement Samples

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Couples usually refrain from filing prenuptials agreements because they do not really understand the essence of it. With the increasing number of divorces in the United States, couples must think over this matter and try to act prudently in this regard; they may suffer losses in future otherwise. This agreement may sound indistinctly unromantic to you, but it is better to choose filing them for your own safety.

Those who do not know much about the prenuptial agreement, here are the nuts and bolts of the agreement that you need to know.

What is a Prenuptial Agreement?

Prenuptial agreement or pre-nup is a legal contract that is signed between couples before they marry. These contracts decide on to the financial arrangements in between the spouse and determine what will happen to the couple’s money, asset and business in case of separation or divorce.

This agreement develops the rights for each spouse. Setting out the future earnings, possession of assets, potential division of wealth, assets and other properties, couples can be at relief. Moreover, couples usually sign up for these contracts in their second or third marriages.

According to a survey, 50% of all marriages in the US end in divorce – all the more reason to sign a prenuptial agreement to protect yourself against future financial losses. This is not just limited to wealthy spouses; instead, it is beneficial for both middle class and upper class spouses. When it comes to protecting rights of spouses, a prenuptial agreement plays a great role.

If you do not sign up for this agreement and one of the spouses dies or gets divorced, then the state will divide the properties and assets as per their choice. What if the outcome is not in your favor or according to your likings? Consequently, it is better to file as things may go in your favor and the outcomes you are pleased with.

Why Should You Use a Prenuptial Agreement?

Well, there may be several reasons to why couples require signing the prenuptial agreement before the marriage. Precisely, the agreement secures the assets of the spouses, but there are certain specific reasons prenuptial agreements help in.

  • They ensure about the protection of one party regarding the debts of the other
  • The agreements determine if the property should be passed on after the death
  • It guarantees to secure the specified assets of one party that they have chosen
  • These contracts simplify the property division in case of divorce
  • These agreements clarify regarding the financial responsibilities of the two parties
  • They can also determine who will inherit the property, money, and assets after the separation or divorce

Prenuptial Agreement Forms

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What Should Be Covered in a Prenuptial Agreement?

The prenuptial agreements vary on the basis of specific situation for every couple and marriage. There are certain areas which are covered by the pre-nups, let’s have a look at them below.

  • They define the property that should be considered separate between the spouses. These are the properties and assets that are acquired by the partners before, inheritance, marriage, and personal objects.
  • They clarify where the property and assets will go after the death of either spouse during the marriage or if they get separated or divorced.
  • They specify the difference and preferences of couples for their own maintenance and support. This is commonly known as spousal support, this is financial support which is given by one of the spouses in case of divorce or separation.
  • They state how the joint property that was bought together will be distributed in case of divorce or separation.
  • If the couple has children together after their marriage, who will be responsible to keep and support the child. This will be decided by the court anyway.

What are the Potential Reasons For You to Sign Up for the Prenuptial Agreement?

Now that you have clearly understood what is a prenuptial agreement, you should also know about the possible reasons that may be the basis for you to sign this agreement.

When You Own a Business

If it not that you do not trust your partners, but as you see there are so many divorces and marriages do not stay for long, you should consider pre-nup contracts. With that being said, it is essential for the business owners to protect their company’s assets and properties. After all a business owner pull out all stops to establish their business and will surely not allow anyone to take everything at once.

For this reason, business may want to protect their assets from, their spouses. It is the spouse’s choice to either mention that their partner has right on their business and its value during the marriage or no right over the property if divorced. For example, if you rare an inventor, you will want to protect your patents and copyrights. Consequently, the choice is yours and you have all the right to claim anything in your agreement.

When Your Spouse is Liable to Debt

So, you are marrying someone who is liable to a lot of debt. Well, that is something you must look into. Now that you are in love with them and you do want to marry them despite their debts and liabilities, you should ensure that you sign for a prenuptial agreement for safety. Regardless of the understanding and love between you people, you must always secure your assets and properties for your security.

When Your Are Remarrying

As mentioned previously, the prenuptial contracts are usually signed by couples who are re-marrying. Couples do not file these agreements in their first marriages hence suffer loses. After undergoing the bad experience, they try not to repeat the mistake. Hence, try to secure your assets and properties with this contract.

Another point of view for the remarriages is that a person can have children, home and other obligations from their previous marriage therefore their legal concerns are different than the first marriage. So, in this case, your prenuptial contract will ensure that all you properties will be distributed as per your will after you pass away.

When You are Wealthier Than Your Partner

Now this can be really a reality check for you. We tie knots with people whom we love unconditionally and without any reason. Marriage should not be done for greed or any other reason; instead partners should be generous and sincere to each other. But in this litigious society, we see many people marrying others for the sake of money. If you really want to know whether or not your partner is marrying you for money or your love, then ask them to sign a prenuptial agreement.

When You Wish to Protect Your Partner

There are cases when one of the partners is poor and the other one is rich. In this case, the wealthier ones wish to support their partners with money. By filing prenuptial agreement, you can show your love and affection to your partner. The agreement will ensure that declared part of the property or money is theirs and they can use it anyway.

Prenuptial Agreement Examples

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What are the Pros and Cons of Prenuptial Agreement?

After the discussions above, you may have got an idea that the prenuptial agreements are quite essential. But there is some more information that we will help you in exploring by going a little deeper into the pros and cons of the contract.

The Pros

Financial Security

Usually we see that couples fight over the financial problems. No matter how much spouses love each other, there comes a time when for some reason they will over financial issues if they are facing any. But the best part is that these financial problems can be resolved with the prenuptial contracts. These agreements will help you in discussing financial matters down the road and ensure about your financial security.

Being Fair

We have seen cases where one partner is frugal and responsible about spending money while the other one spends irresponsibly. Then in this regard, the spending habits need to be considered. When couples file this agreement, the one who did not spend much and tried saving money do not get penalized or punished if their imprudent partner dies.

Children

Prenuptial agreements are really beneficial for the children. When the spouses have children during their marriage, they need to be looked after if they are getting separated or divorced for any reason. Children are their responsibility and any one of the partners must take their charge for their financial matters such as school expenses, living expenses etc so that they are not left unattended after the death or divorce of their parents.

Cons

Erodes Trust

This agreement can be beneficial for some reasons, but this can erode the trusts among both of them. For example, if the partners are young and have started with equal contributions, then signing this contract does not make sense. It can shatter their trust upon each other and can make the any one of the partners suspicious about their motives.

Inefficient to Cost

Some of the experts believe that the prenuptial agreements prevent costly litigations when the couple takes a divorce. But some of the advocates claim they have seen most of the lawyers setting aside partners agreement, this results in zero cost saving. This usually happens with the partners who are less wealthy and in case of irregular terms and conditions.

Lack of Faith

Well, no matter how much you love your partner, when you are presenting a prenuptial agreement, you are questioning their honesty; hence this can determine the lack of faith and trust among you both. This is actually telling your partner that you are unsure about their relationship that is why you are filing this contract. You partner will judge you and your commitment towards them when you wish to protect yourself more than them.

Prenuptial Agreement Templates

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Limitations of the Prenuptial Agreement

Prenuptial agreements can be used for many reasons including a number of stipulations from religious beliefs to maintenance costs. But there are certain limitations too. According to a seasoned lawyer Michele Sacks Lowenstein, there are three limitations that all couples must keep in mind before signing for the contracts.

Here is what a prenuptial agreement cannot do:

  • These contacts are unable to eliminate child support payments
  • They cannot do anything to promote your divorce
  • They are unable to provide help regarding the unborn child

Final Word

Marriage involves several legal aspects and they surely involve many technicalities. Therefore, hiring a lawyer and asking them to help you out with prenuptial agreement is a wise option. If you also want to protect yourself from future losses, greed and overreaching avoiding the heartaches, you should also look over this matter and consider filing this agreement. You can look through the simplest and most appropriate prenuptial agreement sample or template available on the website and fill your agreement today!

TemplateLab June 25th, 2017

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