While getting married can be a joyous occasion filled with smiles and hope for the future, sadly nearly 50 percent of marriages in the U.S. ultimately end in divorce. If you and your spouse should ever split up, determining who gets what can be a nightmare if an agreement hasn’t already been established. This is where prenuptial and postnuptial agreements come in handy.
Making an agreement ahead of time can make things easier in the event of a divorce and help you protect your assets. Issues such as custody battles and property rights can be simplified, making the process of divorce a little bit easier to cope with. Keep reading to learn the differences between these types of agreements and to help determine which one is right for you.
Understanding the Differences between Prenuptial & Postnuptial Agreements
Realistically speaking, the only main difference between a prenup and a postnup is the time that they are created, as suggested by their prefixes. Prenuptial agreements are made before your wedding day and are considered effective immediately upon being married, while a postnuptial agreement is made once you have already tied the knot. Their purposes are the same: determining who gets what during a divorce. The real question is whether or not you need one.
Having a “prenup” or a “postnup” is sort of like owning a fire extinguisher: you hope to never need it, but you’ll be glad to have it if you do. The purpose of having an agreement in place is not to lure married couples into divorce court or to set yourself up for failure, but to prepare yourself against the worst possible scenario. In addition to divorce, a marital agreement can help determine the distribution of assets in the event of the death of a spouse.
Another common reason for establishing a marital agreement is to ensure that a person’s children from a previous marriage receive certain assets upon their death. Changing circumstances, such as receiving an inheritance, can also bring about the need for a postnup. Individual situations vary, but it is nevertheless always smart to protect yourself and your family.
Whether you’re getting married soon or you’ve been married for years, it may be wise prepare a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement. A Riverside County divorce attorney from Hanson, Gorian, Bradford & Hanich can help you establish the terms and prepare you for unforeseen circumstances.Call us today at (951) 687-6003 to take advantage of your free and confidential consultation.