Most Common Prenuptial Agreements

Marriage contracts are only part of the guarantee that your estate plan is executed as you see fit. Remember that you also need to create and save other documents such as wills and living trusts. “Just like a romantic partnership, a marriage is a financial partnership,” Wallack says. “A marriage contract is a business transaction within your relationship, so, like any other financial discussion, try to put your emotions aside and think clearly.” Each state has its own separate laws, which govern the types of property constituting separate property and the types of conjugal property (some states use “co-ownership” laws, which often prescribe 50/50 fractions). In the event of separation by death or divorce, the court separates all marital property according to the laws of the State. To prevent a court from deciding what happens to your property acquired during your marriage, you can use a marriage contract. In short, a marriage contract is simply an alternative estate planning instrument that protects the financial interests of the couple and their heirs. People in their second or third marriage are frequent users of prenup. They have already divorced, perhaps to their financial detriment, and have no intention of making the same mistakes again. In addition to protecting children from previous relationships, prenups can protect the interest of any spouse in the assets they brought to the marriage, such as retirement accounts and real estate.

If you or your partner think a marriage contract is the right choice for your financial future, openly and honestly discuss the pros and cons of the contract and give yourself enough time to make a preliminary agreement. Be careful about what may or may not be included in the agreement, and if you are both ready to proceed, you should hire an experienced lawyer to help you finalize and submit the necessary documents. When it comes to the future, nothing is ever guaranteed, but having a valid marriage contract before refusing your vows can give you both the rest you need to start your new life together. Now that you have a better idea of whether or not a marriage contract is available to you, it`s time to go a step further and learn what can and cannot be included in your pre-marital contract. Here too, many people mistakenly think of marriage contracts as weapons that can be used in divorce proceedings. But there are strict rules about what can and cannot be included in a pre-marital agreement, and failure to comply with these rules can lead to the cancellation of the contract when it is challenged in court. Marriage contracts not only set the financial plan for your marriage from a legal point of view, but they also involve honest communication about your relationship and your future. That`s why we consulted Sandra L. Schpoont, a family and marriage lawyer and partner at Schpoont & Cavallo LLP, and Robert Wallack, a prominent divorce lawyer and founder of The Wallack Firm, which specializes in matrimonial and family matters, to break down the jargon of a standard contract form and tell us about the five biggest mistakes couples make…

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