What is the Purpose of a Prenuptial Agreement?

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Are you preparing to get married, but unsure if you and your future spouse should form a prenuptial agreement? If so, it may benefit you to contact our Kane County divorce attorneys from the Law Offices of Benedict Schwarz, II P.C. With more than 40 years of collective experience in the field, our team truly knows what it takes to help a couple create a thorough and effective prenuptial agreement.

Traditionally, prenuptial agreements were viewed negatively, and as a way for the wealthier spouse to obtain legal and financial benefits that the less wealthy spouse could not. People also believed that prenuptial agreements encouraged divorce rather than the preservation of marriage.

A prenuptial agreement is a written contract that is formed by two people before they get married. These contracts list the property that each person owns and any debts they may have. Prenups are also used to outline what each spouse's property rights will be after the marriage. They are a way for each spouse to clarify their financial rights and responsibilities during the marriage.

What are some benefits of forming a prenup?

Couples who are marrying and have children from prior marriages can use a prenuptial agreement to specify what will happen to their property once they die. If necessary, the spouses will have the ability to pass on separate property to their children, while also providing for one other. If there is not a prenup intact, the surviving spouse may be able to claim a majority of the other spouse's property, while leaving much less for the children.

If, down the line, the marriage is no longer working and a couple ends up getting divorced, a prenuptial agreement can help the two parties avoid having to go to court. By setting up the terms of what will happen in case of divorce ahead of time, the parties can avoid argument regarding property division or alimony. Prenups can also be used as a way to protect spouses from one another's debts.

What happens if we don't form a prenuptial agreement?

If you do not form a prenuptial agreement, the decision of who will own the property that you acquire during your marriage will be at the judge's discretion. Although Illinois is an equitable division state, this does not necessarily mean that the marital property will be divided equally. If a prenup was never created, a spouse may have the right to:

  • Share ownership of marital property that was acquired during the marriage), with the expectation that the property will be divided between the spouses in the event of divorce
  • Sustain debts during marriage that the other spouse would otherwise have to pay if a contract was in effect
  • Share in the management and control of any marital or community property

Hire Our Trusted Divorce Lawyers in St. Charles or West Dundee

We recognize the stigma that often comes along with prenuptial agreements, and we are here to tell you that a prenup could actually greatly benefit you in the long run. By forming a prenup, you could ensure your assets are protected, your children are accounted for, and any potential confrontation is avoided. To find out how you and your future spouse could benefit from creating a prenuptial agreement, do not hesitate to contact our firm today!