A premarital (or “prenuptial”) agreement is a contract between two people who plan to marry.
Prior to their marriage, the parties decide how they want their individual property and any joint property to be divided in the event the marriage terminates, whether by death or divorce. Spousal support may also be addressed in a premarital agreement.
The premarital agreement is often associated with couples who have different levels of wealth at the time of their marriage, or when at least one of the parties has been married previously and seeks to preserve their wealth for their children or protect their wealth from the new spouse. However, premarital agreements are becoming more and more common for the “average” couple, as more and more people are marrying later and have each already accumulated assets on their own. Awareness of the high incidence of divorce has placed premarital agreements on the radar for many couples intent upon marriage.
There are specific requirements for a premarital agreement, in order for it to be enforceable at the time of divorce . An attorney should be consulted with regard to the drafting and signing of any agreement. Like postmarital agreements, there is never any guarantee that a premarital agreement will be enforceable, but the likelihood is much higher if all the legal requirements are met.
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