You might not think that you need a prenuptial agreement when getting married. However, if you’re bringing assets into the union, it’s a good idea to have paperwork in place explaining who owns what and how assets will be distributed in the event of a divorce. While this subject can be difficult to broach during the lead up to a marriage, it’s crucial to ensure you and your spouse remain protected financially. Bankrate explains a few of the basics regarding prenuptial agreements.
Prenups are concerned with assets or property owned by either spouse prior to the marriage taking place. This is usually applicable to people who are entering into a second marriage or those who are older when they get married. While you might think it can be easy to delineate who owned what coming into the marriage in event of a divorce, this is rarely the case. The truth is assets often become intermingled, which means it’s much harder to separate them when the time comes.
Some couples believe that postnuptial agreements serve the same purpose as prenups, and while this is largely true, postnups are not always honored by the court. In this case, the burden of proof is usually a lot more rigorous, which makes it more difficult to uphold. Even if you opt for a prenup over a postnup, there are steps you can take to make the asset-division process much easier.
For example, you and your spouse can set up separate bank accounts to prevent money from becoming intermeshed. You can also refrain from owning property jointly with your spouse, which can lead to some confusion if you should divorce. Prenups not only make it easier to divide assets when necessary, they also allow you and your soon-to-be spouse to have a frank discussion concernging financial matters before you get married.