Pre and Post Nuptial Agreements

When two people make the decision to get married, the hope and belief is that the union will last a lifetime. Unfortunately, the facts tell us that roughly half of all marriages in the United States end in divorce.

For anyone preparing for upcoming nuptials, it is wise and prudent to take a step back from their feelings and consider things in practical terms. It may be in your best interest (and the best interest of your future spouse) to consider a pre-nuptial agreement setting out the terms of the following potential issues:

  • possession of assets,
  • control of property, whether non-marital or acquired through the marriage,
  • treatment of any future earnings, and
  • the potential division of each if the marriage is someday dissolved.

The Law Offices of John A. Conniff highly recommends that a prenuptial agreement be considered in the event that you or your future spouse have substantial assets or debts, stake in a business, children from a prior marriage, potential inheritances, or if there is major disparity in income between you and your future spouse.

For many, a prenuptial agreement is a contingency or insurance plan put in place to guard against difficult and potentially acrimonious divorce proceedings. It is important to understand that in no way are prenuptial agreements designed to be divisiveĀ or undermine the love between you and your spouse-to-be, rather, they are meant to protect your financial stability and your loved ones.

In contrast, a postnuptial agreement is between parties who are married. These agreements typically define the “character” of all or a portion of marital assets. It can also define who is responsible for debts.

A post-nuptial agreement is often used to protect the marital property interests of one spouse if the other spouse is about to embark on a risky business venture. It can also be helpful during a time of marital problems, providing peace of mind to a spouse who feels financially vulnerable but who might be willing to work on a relationship if they felt their interests were secured.

Please contact our office if you are interested in exploring whether either of these options is right for you.