When you are planning a wedding, you may not be thinking about prenuptial agreements. It might be the furthest thing from your mind right now because thinking about divorce is sad. However, it is a good idea to consider having a pre-marital agreement.
Prenuptial Agreements | Marriage Insurance
Negotiating a prenuptial agreement may not be the most romantic activity an engaged couple shares in, but for individuals with significant assets, it is a realistic and necessary precaution. You carry insurance for all the valuable assets you hold: auto, home, health and life. A pre-marital arrangement is marriage insurance.
Prenuptial Agreements | Equitable Distribution
As an “equitable distribution” state, New York assumes that whatever wealth or debt you bring to the marriage is “separate property,” and all assets earned, and debt incurred during the marriage is “marital property.” This court divides “equitably,” which does not necessarily mean equally, though it will usually fall at around 50/50.
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Prenuptial Agreements | What to Know
A pre-marital agreement can assist in two regards. First, the agreement can definitively designate what property is separate. An accurate catalog of assets can be very useful later, especially if divorce proceedings become contentious. Second, a prenuptial agreement can explicitly waive the right to equitable distribution, and state alternatively what marital assets the parties to the marriage are to receive and for what debt each will be responsible. The prenuptial agreements can even set a time limit and dollar amount for spousal maintenance.
While a pre-marital agreement can set certain terms in anticipation of divorce, it cannot define the parameters of child custody, child support, or visitation. Your interests are not central to these decisions – the court will always prioritize the best interests of the child.
If you and your fiancé would like to get a preputial agreements, please call our experienced Saratoga family law attorneys for knowledgeable guidance.