How Do I Know If Need a Pre-Nuptial Agreement?

Posted in Marriage on December 3, 2018

Deciding whether a prenuptial is right for you and your spouse-to-be is a very personal decision. Though loved ones and friends can offer advice, a Fort Mill prenuptial agreement attorney likely has the insight to help you decide whether you need a pre-nup.

Prenuptial agreements should not be scary or seem taboo, despite the negative cultural idea of them. In some instances, they are not only helpful but also necessary for dividing debt, assets, and investments. No two prenuptial agreements are exactly alike, but they are always an important safety measure for both spouses.

When is a Pre-Nup Necessary?

Prenuptial agreements are particularly useful for couples where one or both people have significant assets or for potential adoptions. A pre-nup would be especially ideal in several situations.

  • One or both parties have an estate or valuable assets from which a spouse should not benefit.
  • One or both parties have significant debt that the other does not want to be reflected as part of their debt-to-income ratio. Examples of this include student loans, tax debt, foreclosures, or bankruptcy.
  • One or both parties own stake in their own business or a family business that their spouse-to-be does not and so should not benefit from them in a divorce.
  • One or both parties have assets in general of a value higher than $50,000 that they do not want to share in the marriage or in a potential divorce.
  • One or both parties make incomes higher than $100,000 per year and have concerns about alimony in a potential divorce.

In these scenarios, a pre-nup not only makes sense, but it also has the power to ease stress and anxiety before a wedding. If both people agree, prenuptial agreements can be a source of security.

People who blend families should discuss creating a pre-nup, too. A pre-nup can ensure assets will go to children upon death, rather than a marital partner. A pre-nup can also protect parental rights if the couple decides to adopt.

Pre-Nups and Millennials

While conventional wisdom says that engaged people who do not have money do not need a pre-nup, it is rare that an individual comes into a marriage without any assets or debts. While a stigma around pre-martial agreements still exists, it is usually in the best interest of both people to discuss a pre-nup with an attorney.

In the past, pre-nups were mostly for the rich, but wealth is only one of the issues to consider before a marriage. Prenuptial agreements are on the rise as millennials continue to marry, which makes sense. This generation is more likely to marry later in life when they have already established businesses, property, or assets.

Post-nups, or martial agreements that happen after a marriage, also protects individuals in a marriage, and they work the same way. However, because they happen after the wedding, some courts may interpret them differently than pre-nups.

Regardless of assets, debts, or children from previous marriages, most couples benefit from the security a pre-nuptial agreement offers. An attorney can investigate the financial history of both parties and suggest a contract that will protect everyone involved.