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Prenuptial Agreements: Not Just for the Rich and Famous

Couples should consider whether they want to sign a prenuptial agreement after they get engaged.

You got up the nerve. You popped the question and your partner said “yes.” You are both excited about the upcoming wedding, but there are many issues you must agree upon before walking down the aisle. In the midst of enjoyable decisions for the ceremony and reception – What flowers should you use? What food should you serve? Band or DJ? – there are also practical considerations that many couples ought to think about.

Among these less glamorous issues is the question of whether you should sign a prenuptial agreement. In the past, prenups were largely viewed as a tool for the very wealthy to protect their assets. These days, the number of people opting to sign a prenuptial agreement before walking down the aisle is on the rise.

According to a survey of family law attorneys in 2013, 63 percent saw a rise in the number of people deciding to sign a prenuptial agreement during the three years prior.

Prenuptial agreements can be a valuable tool for couples deciding to get married, as it ensures both spouses are completely aware of their financial position. In addition to determining what will happen to assets upon the dissolution of the marriage, prenups can also account for debt. If one spouse accumulates debt during the marriage, a prenuptial agreement can outline what would happen should the marriage end in divorce.

Social media clauses

Prenups can also discuss non-financial situations. As an increasing number of people are using social media platforms – such as Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram – these days, former spouses have simple and convenient avenues to disparage and embarrass their ex upon a divorce.

In an effort to avoid inappropriate photographs or defamatory statements posted on these social media sites, some people choose to include social media clauses in their prenuptial agreements. Such clauses prohibit spouses from posting such messages on social media in the event of a divorce, and generally provide for a monetary penalty should one spouse fail to adhere to the terms of the provision.

Seek the counsel of a family law attorney

If you are recently engaged, it is a good idea to consider whether you ought to sign a prenuptial agreement with your soon-to-be husband or wife. As it can be a difficult topic to discuss, it is best to approach the issue well in advance of the nuptials.

When creating and signing a prenuptial agreement, it is a good idea to consult with a skilled family law attorney. A knowledgeable legal professional will ensure the contract is drafted properly and legally enforceable.