Over the past twenty years, the number of premarital agreements has increased 500 percent. Streamlined laws and procedures have something to do with this increase. But perhaps more importantly, many Millenials now consider a premarital agreement a must-have.
As outlined below, these agreements cover a number of important issues. So, prenups do more than help eliminate messy divorce proceedings. In many cases, they put marriages on stronger foundations.
Typically, no contracts are ironclad, and that includes premarital agreements. In some cases, Hutchinson, MN lawyers can overturn unfavorable premarital agreements. Generally, McLeod County judges will not honor these pacts if they are blatantly one-sided (e.g. you get all the marital debts and I get all the marital assets) and/or each spouse did not have an independent Hutchinson, MN lawyer during the entire process.
Money squabbles and poor communication break up more marriages than adultery or almost anything else. Often, these two things overlap. That’s why a premarital agreement is so important. These pacts transfer informal agreements into a black and white legal document that is very hard to break. Additionally, when things change, the spouses can keep the conversation going and modify their premarital agreements.
Many spouses work for startup companies that compensate their employees with stock and stock options instead of cash. Stock is very difficult to value during a divorce. These certificates and options may be essentially worthless when issued and extremely valuable a few years later. Premarital agreements establish a baseline value that time or one spouse cannot unilaterally change.
Social Media and Confidentiality
On a related note, premarital agreements can set boundaries for shared company information on Facebook, Twitter, and other social media platforms. These limits help entrepreneurial spouses protect their reputations, property, and business interests. The definition of “confidential information” is a bit unclear, which is why a Hutchinson, MN lawyer must be very experienced in this area.
Former college students owe roughly $1.5 trillion in student loans. These individuals have other kinds of debt as well, such as car loans, credit cards, and mortgage debt. When people get married, they often use money from their paychecks, which is marital property, to retire these nonmarital debts. Unless a prenuptial agreement lays down some repayment ground rules, the resulting commingled funds create quite a mess.
If people get divorced, they must do more than fairly divide debts. They must also divide the houses, cars, and other property associated with these debts. Since people are getting married later in life, asset division is much more of an issue now than it was twenty years ago. Assets may become commingled in much the same way as debts. For example, Husband might use a wedding gift from his parents to fix up a rental house Wife owned before the marriage. Depending on the facts, and the wording in a premarital agreement, the house and associated rental income could be marital property, Wife’s nonmarital property, or Husband’s nonmarital property.
Generally, premarital pacts cannot cover child support or any child custody/visitation issues. The best interests of the children, and not the best interests of the parents, guide these matters. However, reproductive rights, such as frozen embryos, are an exception. Nearly a half-million frozen embryos are in storage throughout the country. Premarital agreements clearly state who they belong to if the couple divorces, thus avoiding a possibly bitter emotional fight.
Many people have been married at least once before. Divorce usually severs all inheritance and succession rights, but in many cases, that’s not the intended result. If a spouse had children in that prior relationship, the spouse might want to extend inheritance rights. Additionally, premarital agreements can include (or exclude) step-children and future biological children in these rights. Hutchinson, MN lawyers often draw up wills and other executory documents to go with premarital agreements in these situations.
Reach out to Diligent Attorneys
A premarital agreement is usually a good idea for modern couples. For a free consultation with an experienced Hutchinson, MN lawyer, contact Carlson & Jones, P.A. Convenient payment plans are available.