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Prenuptial Agreements Can Prevent Problems

Posted on in Prenuptial Agreements

Naperville family law attorneyThe topic of finances can be a sensitive subject for couples, especially when they are considering marriage. In fact, a recent survey found that nearly 70 percent of engaged couples “held a negative attitude about discussing money with their fiancé.” Despite these findings, it is certainly wise to have an informed discussion—and usually more than one—with your partner about assets, debts, and money management responsibilities prior to marriage. For some couples, a prenuptial agreement opens the door for this very important discussion.

What Can a Prenuptial Agreement Include?

Prenuptial agreements are legal documents that represent contractual agreements between two people who intend to marry. The terms of a prenuptial agreement can address how, in the event of divorce or death of a partner, a couples’ estate will be distributed. The prenuptial agreement will be customized and highly specific to the couple’s unique circumstances. There are no standard requirements in this kind of agreement, leaving maximum flexibility for the parties to define their wishes and expectations. Couples who elect to marry without a prenuptial agreement leave their assets vulnerable to being the requirements contained in Illinois state laws governing the dissolution of marriage if the couple elects to divorce or in the event of the death of one partner.

Separating Emotions from Reality

Largely due to misunderstanding and a negative portrayal in popular culture, prenuptial agreements often carry a stigma of negativity. While some people may presume prenuptial agreements are for those who plan for their marriage to fail, or that one partner is trying to take advantage of the other with a prenuptial agreement, this is not always the case. These misconceptions are dangerous because, too often, couples are unduly influenced to dismiss the prenuptial agreement discussion prior to marriage, potentially placing both partners at a disadvantage if the union fails or a partner dies. When people dismiss prenuptial agreements as unromantic, it is important to remember that national statistics about divorce are the real romance killers. Studies have shown that up to one-third of all first marriages will fail, and up to half of second and third marriages will end in divorce.

Do Not Put Your Financial Future at Risk

There are a number of different topics that can be addressed by a prenuptial agreement. One or both partners may have children and want to designate assets for them. There may also be a substantial difference in the income levels of the couple, or one partner may be carrying significant personal debt. It is also a myth that prenuptial agreements are only for high-net-worth couples. Prenuptial agreements provide the opportunity to be proactive about minimizing stress and conflict over finances if a divorce occurs.

Seek Legal Help

If you are considering marriage and have questions about how a prenuptial agreement could help you and your partner, contact an experienced Naperville family law attorney. We will provide the guidance you need throughout the process. Call 630-352-2240 for a free consultation at Pesce Law Group, P.C. today.


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