Why All Couples Should Consider a Prenuptial Agreement
One of the least discussed topics before couples marry is usually finances. One of the most discussed topics when a couple decides to end their marriage, however, is usually finances. It is critical to discuss finances before marriage, and a prenuptial agreement opens the door for this very important discussion.
What Is a Prenuptial Agreement?
A prenuptial agreement is a legal document that serves as private agreement between two people who intend to marry. In a prenuptial agreement, the parties define how the couple’s assets and property will be divided in the event of divorce or death. A prenuptial agreement may be narrow or broad in its scope, depending on the individual needs of the couple. The issue of spousal support may be included in the agreement, but there are no specific requirements. Without a prenuptial agreement, the couple will be required to reach an agreement later on, or their assets will be divided by the Illinois state laws governing divorce if the couple elects to terminate their marriage.
Understanding Emotions Around Prenuptial Agreements
In popular culture, prenuptial agreements are often seen in a negative light. They are generally viewed as an uncomfortable topic of conversation that indicates one person is either planning for the marriage to fail or trying to gain an advantage over their partner. Unfortunately, these common misconceptions can lead couples down a stressful and detrimental path if they elect to marry without a prenuptial financial plan.
It is common to hear people speculate that prenuptial agreements take the romance out of the marriage journey. Keep in mind that national statistics show that one third of all first marriages will fail and up to half of all second and third marriages will end in divorce. In the face of such odds, is it not wiser to hope for the best and prepare for the worst?
How a Prenuptial Agreement Can Help
There are many valid reasons to put a prenuptial agreement in place. One partner may have children from a previous marriage and wishes to preserve assets and property for them. There may be a substantial difference in the income level of one spouse compared to the other. One partner may be entering the marriage with a significant amount of pre-existing personal debt. Any one of these situations would benefit from having a prenuptial agreement.
It is also a myth that only wealthy people need prenuptial agreements. A prenuptial agreement could be appropriate to help all couples, regardless of their wealth:
Make responsible financial decisions
fainBe proactive about minimizing stress and conflict over finances
A prenuptial agreement is a good way to define what each spouse’s assets, rights and responsibilities will be before getting married. By establishing some guidelines and certainty in the event of a divorce, much of the financial anxiety and risk becomes a non-issue in the relationship. This can help support the couple in having a more harmonious and stress- free union. What could be more romantic than that?
Talk to a Kane County Prenuptial Agreement Attorney
If you will soon be getting married and are considering a prenuptial agreement, contact an experienced St. Charles family law attorney to discuss your situation. At MKFM Law, we can help you develop a prenuptial agreement that is customized to meet your unique needs and concerns. Call 630-665-7300 for a confidential consultation today.