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Prenuptial Agreement: Not Just For The Wealthy

When most people in Louisiana make the decision to walk down the aisle, they likely do so thinking that the marriage will last forever. However, people and relationships change, and some couples decide it may be in their best interests to go their separate ways. In many cases of divorce, a prenuptial agreement has allowed a more peaceful dissolution of the marriage. While in the past, most prenuptial agreements were considered to be for the wealthy, more people today are deciding to create such an agreement for a variety of reasons.

Creating a prenuptial agreement has a variety of benefits. For example, it provides a list of liabilities and assets, allowing a married couple to start the marriage fully aware of each other’s financial status. While some think that such an agreement only determines who gets what asset, a prenup also determines who gets what debt. As student loan debt increases, for example, many people determine who will be responsible for such liabilities prior to their marriage in the event of a divorce.

Of course, prenups do also determine who gets what assets. Since more people are waiting to get married — and the average age of both first-time brides and grooms is higher now than 25 years ago — they likely bring more assets into the marriage. In addition to money and property, many people have a closely held interest in a business or stock options. Because of the difficulty valuing these forms of assets, a prenuptial agreement can determine in advance how they will be treated in the event of a divorce.

As technology advances, couples must also deal with issues that are relatively new for modern brides and grooms. Many times, people will determine how social media can be used. For example, couples can include confidentiality clauses that determine what information can be shared. Additionally, advances in medical technology has changed reproduction, with many people storing embryos. A prenup can indicate who has rights to these in the event of a divorce.

Creating a prenuptial agreement is just one form of planning for the future. By doing so, couples can come into a marriage knowing that their eyes are open to each other’s financial situation. Fortunately, an experienced attorney can help people in Louisiana negotiate fair and enforceable agreements.

Source: cnbc.com, “Prenups: Not just for the 1 percent“, Kelli B. Grant, Jan. 20, 2015

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