What to Include in a Prenuptial Agreement


Among the many preparations that go into getting married, many couples do not consider a prenuptial agreement to be one of them. However, there are many situations where signing a premarital agreement may be beneficial, including when children from a previous marriage or a large estate are involved. Here are the things a couple should include in a prenuptial agreement.

What is a prenuptial agreement?
First, a prenuptial agreement is a legally binding document signed by a couple before they walk down the aisle. The agreement addresses how the couple will handle various financial aspects of their relationship, such as property ownership and bank accounts. A prenuptial agreement aims to reduce disagreements during the marriage or help divide assets in the unfortunate event of divorce or death.

Advantages of prenuptial agreements
Prenuptial agreements allow couples to openly discuss their expectations for the relationship, building a solid foundation for the marriage to come. Since financial issues are one of the leading causes of divorce, discussing the financial aspects of a relationship should be an essential aspect of wedding preparations. In case of a divorce, prenuptial agreements will save the couple money and time during divorce litigation.

Elements of a prenuptial agreement
Prenuptial agreements are tailored toward the individual couple and their desires for their relationship. However, there are a few things every prenuptial agreement should include:

Handling finances
Couples should specify how they will handle finances in a prenuptial agreement. This includes whether to open joint bank accounts or contribute to each other’s retirement. Business owners should state the new spouse’s role in the company in a prenuptial agreement. If a spouse enters the marriage with a large amount of debt, the prenuptial agreement can specify who is responsible for paying it down. In case of a divorce, this section could also establish alimony payments.
Asset division
Personal asset division is one of the primary sections in a prenuptial agreement. In this section, couples should dictate who will receive personal assets in the event of a divorce, such as:
● Real estate property
● Family heirlooms
● Pets
● Gifts

Shared responsibilities
Prenuptial agreements deal with a relationship’s financial aspects and are not the place to dictate everyday tasks like who will do the dishes. However, specifying financial-related responsibilities, such as who will be responsible for paying bills and who will file tax returns, is allowed. The document could also include work expectations, like whether a spouse will stay home to take care of children or an elderly family member.

Children from previous relationships
If a spouse has children from a previous relationship, financial provisions or defining who will receive inheritances if one spouse passes away should be included in the prenuptial agreement. This is also where a spouse may formally waive their espousal or estate rights, allowing children to inherit the estate in place of the new spouse.

Remsen Law: Lake & Seminole county family law attorney
Frank P. Remsen is an experienced family law attorney serving Lake and Seminole County, FL. If you have questions about drafting a prenuptial agreement or want an attorney to look over one before signing it, call our office at 352-309-0970 for a low cost initial consultation.