Understanding The Legal Process

3 Reasons For A Prenuptial Agreement When Divorce Isn't The Concern

by Eli Gregory

Some engaged couples shy away from setting up a prenuptial agreement. They worry it implies they're at risk of getting divorced. If this describes your situation, understand that you're not alone in feeling this way. There are good reasons to set up a prenup that don't involve a future split. Knowing some of those reasons may convince you to have one set up if you know this arrangement is advisable. 

Children From Previous Relationships Receive Their Fair Share

Without a prenuptial agreement, an airtight will or designated beneficiaries, a deceased person's assets are diverted to the spouse. If either of you have children from a prior relationship, you may want them to receive a certain amount of the assets instead. A prenuptial arrangement sets forth the details. 

This agreement can even cover future inheritances that you will likely acquire. If you know that your parents or other relatives have willed certain things to you or you will be an automatic beneficiary, you can direct those assets to your children in a prenup.

Protection Against a Spouse's Debt Load

If either of you has substantial debt that may become a future problem, a prenuptial agreement can protect the spouse from creditor actions. Collections activity may attempt to put liens on property or bank accounts, which means a person becomes at risk when combining assets with a debt-saddled spouse. A family law attorney can set up an arrangement specifying limits on the accountability for each other's debt load.

You Agree on Financial Responsibilities

If financial irresponsibility has plagued either of you, setting up a plan for sound financial behavior in a prenuptial arrangement can help keep you on track. It prevents either of you from simply refusing to keep up your end of the bargain.

For example, you might divvy up the mortgage or rent payment in half and decide who pays which of the household bills. You can decide whether you'll share any credit cards or hold individual responsibility for cards. 

This portion of the arrangement can be devised to include an annual review, during which the two of you can make changes as your financial situation changes. 

Concluding Thoughts

Consider what you want to accomplish with a prenuptial arrangement. Then consult a family law attorney who can help you create one and file it with the court. Although some individuals view these agreements as a bit contentious, they actually can be very beneficial and help a married couple maintain peace of mind regarding their finances.