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What Should Be Included In A Prenup?
People nowadays marry far later in life than they did in the past, usually in their twenties or early thirties. Many of these people having been in the workforce for a decade or more. Some will have worked for ten years, built careers, amassed assets, and purchased property by this time.
As a result, delaying marriage until you have some professional experience can help you be more financially secure. However, if you wait until later to marry, you may have more to lose from the start if the marriage does not work out.
Although people sometimes complain about prenuptial agreements, prenuptial agreements between couples actually ensure that both parties are protected in the event of divorce. This is especially important for two people who were both successful before marriage and want to remain as independent as possible.
If you’re considering whether to sign a prenup, read on to find out what you should include.
What should be included in a prenup
A prenuptial agreement can contain many different provisions, but it is most effective if it covers the financial aspects of the marriage.
Provisions concerning the division of property
A prenuptial agreement can clarify what is separate property before the marriage and what is community property that will belong to the marriage in the future. This is important because in the event of a divorce, individual assets will not be taken into account and the community assets will be divided equally.
By clarifying what individual assets are in a prenup, you can avoid costly litigation to protect real estate, savings, investment portfolios, or other assets that others bring into the marriage.
Provision for split liabilities
When people think about what they own, they tend to prioritize assets over liabilities. As with assets, it’s important to decide in advance what to do with debt in the event of a divorce and address that in a prenuptial agreement.
It’s not uncommon to get married with a lot of debt, especially from student loans. A prenuptial agreement can stipulate that these debts will be paid out of the couple’s assets during the marriage, but that the rest of the debt will belong entirely to the person with the pre-marital debt.
In some cases, a prenuptial agreement can set a cap on spousal support payments based on the duration of the marriage. In a prenuptial agreement, a spouse can also agree to waive spousal support rights.
A sunset clause could allay the concerns of those who oppose the concept of a prenup. A sunset clause is a clause that terminates a prenup after a couple has been married for a certain number of years.
What does a prenup not cover?
A prenuptial agreement cannot preempt certain aspects of a divorce, such as child custody or alimony. The court will make decisions based on the best interests of the children in these matters. They don’t make decisions based on the interests of one parent or an agreement between two people.
In addition, a prenuptial agreement cannot contain provisions that facilitate or increase the likelihood of divorce. Similarly, clauses that impose obligations on one party (such as having a baby, losing weight, delegating housework, etc.) are legally invalid and break the entire agreement.
Are prenuptial agreements enforceable in California?
There is no guarantee that a prenuptial agreement will be enforced by a judge, but that doesn’t mean it won’t be considered. The cases where courts strike down prenuptial agreements are usually those that contain illegal or exploitative provisions that explicitly protect one party’s interests at the expense of the other.
If a prenuptial agreement is properly drafted, reviewed and enforced, courts are more likely to take it seriously and respect its legal provisions. However, it’s important to remember that one mistake in a prenup can turn the whole thing upside down.
That’s why it’s important to have a prenuptial agreement drawn up by a competent lawyer who wants to help you protect your future, such as the one at Spodek Law Group. We offer free consultations to discuss your prenup, so please do not hesitate to contact us.
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