Two Reasons To Sign A Prenuptial Agreement Before Your Marriage

While you are planning your wedding, this is the perfect time to start thinking about the advantages of a prenuptial agreement for both you and your spouse. While you may be convinced that you don't need a document like this for your wedding, you may be surprised at some of the lesser-understood benefits of this type of agreement. Here are a few things that a prenuptial agreement can help with.

Protecting Inheritances For Children Of Previous Marriages

If you have children from a previous marriage, you need to consider how your new union will affect their inheritance. By creating a prenuptial agreement, you can clearly define the funds that are earmarked for your children and protect them from being targeted as spousal assets in the event of a divorce.

Since savings and investment accounts can usually be separated as mutual assets during a divorce, this kind of protection is important. Once the agreement is signed, your spouse will be legally barred from seeking any of that money in your divorce settlement or having that money considered in your spousal support negotiations.

Defining The Ownership Of Previously-Owned Properties

Dividing properties can be a difficult process during a divorce, and it's made even more challenging when either of you owned a property already coming into the marriage. This is often the case with an inheritance or something similar. In addition, if one or the other of you inherit property from a family member during the marriage, a prenuptial agreement can help to define who will maintain ownership of those properties. Most states will actually divide the interest in the property during a divorce, so this is an important consideration.

After all, an inherited property or one that was owned before you actually got married should be rightfully retained by the person who owned or inherited it. If you're concerned about ensuring that the divorce decree protects that ownership, you can include existing as well as future properties in the prenuptial agreement.

You might be tempted to skip the prenuptial agreement as an unnecessary legal process, but documents like these can be valuable. Talk with a family law attorney like The Law Offices of John G. McGill, Jr. to see if your situation could benefit from the use of a prenuptial agreement before your vows. Discuss your concerns with your spouse and show him or her how a contract like this can protect them as well, then consider drafting an agreement that helps you both preserve your financial interests.