Divorce is usually the last thing in the minds of a couple that is planning to get married. Bringing up the subject of a prenuptial agreement at this point can be quite sensitive as it may seem to signify a distrust with your partner or a lack of confidence that the marriage you are about to get into is not going to last.
However, granted the current divorce rates, a prenuptial agreement is something you really need to give serious thought to before tying the knot. After all, a prenup does not have to be a sign of tough days ahead. Rather, it can provide an excellent opportunity for the couple to discuss complex financial issues and help keep the marriage on track while protecting each party’s assets and interests.
But, what should you include in your prenuptial agreement? Here are two important items that must feature in any prenup document.
Assets and debts
A prenup agreement allows you and your spouse to maintain independent control over personal assets that you have accumulated before entering into marriage. For instance, you might own a business or a piece of family heirlooms that you do not wish to risk losing should the marriage end in a divorce. In this case, you can eliminate this risk by listing such items as separate personal assets rather than having them as joint property. Likewise, if one party is coming into the marriage with a significant amount of debt, a prenuptial agreement can shield the other party from being responsible for that debt during the divorce.
Whether you have children together or from past relationships, you can use the prenup agreement to grant your children a right to your property in an event of a divorce. However, it is important to understand that you cannot include child custody, support or visitation terms in the prenuptial document. Rather, you can only use this document to determine how your children will inherit your assets.
No one knows what the future holds. However, a prenuptial agreement can help a couple protect their assets and interests regardless of what the future will be like.