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On the fence about a prenup? More info may help

With all of the decisions you are making right now as you plan your wedding, one that you may still struggle with involves the choice of whether you would benefit from a prenuptial agreement.

Whether you have already brought up the subject with your soon-to-be spouse or decided to wait until you have more clarity, obtaining more information regarding its usefulness in your particular situation certainly couldn't hurt.

Let's look at the bad news first

Most people start with the good news, but in this case, it may be better to look at the drawbacks of a prenuptial agreement before getting excited about its benefits. The primary downsides to a prenup include the following:

  • Making arrangements for how your divorce would go may be a mood breaker and cause your intended to question whether you trust him or her.
  • Your love could cloud your judgment when it comes to making agreements.
  • You may limit the amount of spousal support you will receive in the event of a divorce since you can't know what your needs may be if that happens at some point in the future.
  • You may waive your right to inherit from your spouse if he or she dies.
  • You may sign away any rights you may have to a share of your spouse's business even if you help contribute to its success during the marriage.
  • You have no way of knowing what your financial situation will look like in the future, so any agreements you make could end up costing you.

Of course, you could include stipulations in your agreement that may provide you with some protections against these eventualities.

Let's talk about the good news now

Now that you understand the potential downfalls of a prenuptial agreement, let's explore the benefits that it may provide you:

  • You can agree to remain responsible for the debts you each bring to the marriage.
  • You can protect your business from the involvement or control of your spouse in the event of a divorce.
  • You can protect yourself financially if you agree to give up a career in order to remain home with the children or for some other reason.
  • You can protect your right to leave an inheritance for children or grandchildren from a previous relationship.
  • You may be able to limit the amount of spousal support you would pay to your spouse if you divorce.

These are just some of the benefits you receive from a prenuptial agreement. However, before signing any agreement, you need to ensure that it conforms to current law in order to prevent all or a portion of it from being invalidated by the court should you ever need it.

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Courtney ∙ Clark Law, P.C.
104 South Charles Street
Belleville, IL 62220

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