Prenuptial agreements, which are also known as Premarital agreements, are contracts that allow couples to set parameters regarding how their marital assets and marital liabilities will be divided between them in the event of a divorce, regarding keeping separate properties separate throughout a marriage, setting up alimony (which is also known as maintenance) parameters, and regarding other financial matters. Prenuptial agreements can play an important role in protecting your assets in the event that your marriage fails.
If you don’t have a prenuptial agreement – which must be created and executed prior to marriage – there are other steps you can take to protect your financial rights, and an experienced Illinois family law attorney can help you with that.
While prenuptial agreements (also known as premarital agreements) go into effect upon marriage, a postnuptial agreement is another option. Postnuptial agreements are executed after the date of the marriage, and like prenups, they must be in writing and signed by both of you. Further, they cannot include certain terms, such as parenting time and parental responsibilities (child custody arrangements) or child support, which must all be determined in accordance with certain standards, statutes, and laws at the time of divorce.
Finally, postnuptial agreements – like prenuptial agreements – must address the rights of both spouses fairly and not be created in contemplation of divorce. If you have assets you’re interested in protecting in the event that your marriage doesn’t last, a postnuptial agreement may be a good option.
If you own separate property, which refers to those assets you owned prior to the time of your marriage and kept separate throughout your marriage, it will remain your own upon divorce so long as that is clearly distinguishable and determined at that time. There are, however, considerations to keep in mind, including:
If the asset you are interested in protecting is a business, any increase in its value is marital, but there are other points to keep in mind, including:
Keeping a separate business strictly separate can be a daunting undertaking.
If you have concerns regarding protecting your assets in relation to marriage, the best course of action is to discuss your options with a dedicated divorce attorney. At WARD FAMILY LAW, our trusted Illinois divorce attorneys have a wealth of experience helping clients like you implement the tools and strategies necessary to skillfully protect their assets, and we’re here for you, too. That can be with a prenuptial (also known as premarital) agreement or postnuptial agreement. For more information about how we can help, please don’t hesitate to contact us today.
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