Getting married can be one of the most exciting times in a person’s life. One component of wedding planning that is often overlooked is consideration of what will happen if the parties get divorced. People are rarely thinking about divorce as they are preparing to get married. The reality is, however, that over half of all marriages end in divorce. That being said, the process can be made much easier if the parties have a prenuptial agreement.
A prenuptial agreement is a contract between two individuals in contemplation of marriage. A prenup is intended to set forth how the parties will divide property upon divorce or death. Not everyone needs a prenup. Prenups are often recommended in the following cases:
• One or both individual have substantial separate property and/or assets;
• One or both individuals have their own business;
• One or both individuals is anticipated to receive an inheritance.
• One of both individual wants to resolve any future divorce outside of what typically happens pursuant to the Divorce Code
Effective prenuptial agreements address disposition of the parties’ marital and separate property upon death or divorce. Prenups will also set forth how parties will handle marital and separate debts and can provide terms for alimony, alimony pendente lite and spousal support.
Prenuptial agreements are interpreted using contract law principles. That means that a prenup is presumed to be a valid and enforceable agreement unless there has been fraud, misrepresentation or duress. To be enforceable, the parties must also make a full and fair disclosure of all assets and liabilities. It is important for both parties to have legal counsel review the agreement to ensure that it is not challenged later in divorce proceedings.
If you or someone you know is getting married and interested in finding out more information on prenuptial agreements, click or call 610-892-3877.