A prenuptial agreement is simply a legal document detailing arrangements made between two parties contemplating marriage. A postnuptial agreement is similar, except that it is made after the two individuals are married. In both cases, the agreement generally includes stipulations regarding how assets will be divided in the event of a divorce. It may include provisions for children from a previous marriage. It may also cover what should be done with the estate if one of the partners dies.
Prenuptial and postnuptial agreements can be very helpful if a marriage ends in divorce or other unexpected circumstances arise. They are especially useful if one partner has significant assets or anticipates an inheritance. They can also be a protection against one partner's accrual of significant debts. No couple goes into a marriage planning to divorce, but statistics show that it will happen to some. Drawing up an agreement ahead of time, when both parties are thinking rationally, will prevent emotion-laden arguments later. It will also protect from unpredictable decisions by the court.
A variety of topics can be covered in prenuptial and postnuptial agreements, and their contents will vary depending on the situation. There are some basic things to consider, however, in drawing up the agreement. The most obvious stipulation should deal with the division of assets in the event of a divorce. If there are certain assets that should be left in the ownership of one particular spouse, those arrangements should be spelled out.
It is also a good idea to include an agreement concerning spousal maintenance or alimony. Although the document can include guidelines for the care of children, these stipulations are not binding in the event of a divorce since the court will make the decision that is best for the children.
Taking the time to make a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement now can save untold pain, heartache, and even money down the road. If you are preparing for marriage, contact Abraham & Jesselson Law Group, LLC today to discuss your prenuptial agreements in Woodmere, NY and the Nassau County area.