When you say yes to your partner’s marriage proposal, you may consider how you’ll split your assets if you choose to divorce. However, this is something that should be discussed early in your marriage. One option to protect both spouses is a postnuptial agreement. Though less common than a prenuptial agreement, postnuptial contracts are growing in popularity. Read on to learn more about the benefits of a postnuptial agreement and how Los Angeles prenuptial agreement attorneys can help you navigate the process.
What Is a Postnuptial Agreement?
A postnuptial agreement is a legal contract that is drafted after a couple is married. It acts like a prenuptial document, as details each partner’s assets and debt and how they will be divided should a couple decide to divorce. These don’t need to be written immediately after marriage, as some couples are married for years before creating their postnup.
Though no couple gets married and anticipates getting a divorce, it can help provide peace of mind. Many couples may not have time to complete a prenuptial agreement before their wedding or have career changes that affect their income. A postnuptial contract can help keep both parties’ assets safe.
When Are They Beneficial?
Postnups are great for couples who go through economic changes during their marriage.
For example, if one spouse decides to leave their profession and become a stay-at-home parent, a postnuptial agreement can help ensure they are protected during a divorce.
Also, if a spouse gains an inheritance during their marriage, a postnup can help ensure they receive the entire amount of money if the couple divorces. In some instances, this inheritance money can be considered community property, like if the beneficiary places the funds in a joint bank account.
Another benefit is that this contract can help define the terms of any debt that each spouse has. This protects one spouse from becoming responsible for the debt their spouse brought into the marriage or incurred during the marriage.
How Do I Set One Up?
Generally, setting up a postnuptial agreement is best left to an attorney. Because there are many different things that can invalidate the contract, ensuring the legality and validity of the document is essential.
Some of the requirements of setting up a postnup include the following:
- The document must be in writing
- The agreement must be signed voluntarily by both spouses
- There must be full disclosure about all assets and debts before signing the agreement
- The arrangement must be fair and balanced, and if the division is found to be unjust, it will not be recognized
If you’re looking to set up a postnuptial agreement, you’ll want to ensure you enlist the help of a professional martial agreement attorney. The Zitser Family Law Group, APC can help guide you through the creation of the agreement to keep you and your spouse financially protected.