Date: September 7, 2023Attorney: Rebecca E. Frino

Approximately half of all first marriages end in divorce in the United States. The rate of divorce is even higher for those who marry multiple times. Doesn’t it make sense, then, to consider protecting your income and assets to reduce financial uncertainty in the event of death or divorce?

The Growing Popularity of Prenuptial Agreements (a.k.a. Prenups)

The divorce statistics have struck a chord with many couples, leading them to ponder whether a Prenuptial Agreement is a wise choice. In fact, between 2010 and 2022, there was a staggering 500% increase in the number of engaged couples opting for Prenuptial Agreements. By doing so, these couples often discover that they prefer to have a legally binding document in place that reflects their wishes in case their marriage doesn’t last, rather than going through the time, expense, and emotional turmoil of divorce litigation. Additionally, Prenuptial Agreements facilitate open and honest discussions about finances and life goals before entering into marriage.

Understanding Prenuptial Agreements

To determine whether you need a Prenuptial Agreement, it’s crucial to understand what they are – and what they are not. Prenuptial agreements, commonly referred to as “prenups,” are contracts entered into by engaged individuals. These contracts outline their respective financial rights and responsibilities upon marriage, as well as how both separate and marital assets and debts should be divided in case of death or divorce. In simpler terms, prenups can define what is and is not considered marital property and debt, specify the division of property and debt, address spousal support entitlements, and protect against a spouse’s death. However, it’s important to note that prenups cannot address custody or child support matters.

Who Should Consider Prenuptial Agreements?

Prenuptial agreements are invaluable financial and estate planning tools that can benefit a significant portion of the population. For instance, couples in the following situations should seriously consider utilizing prenups:

  • Couples where one or both parties were previously married.
  • Parties with children.
  • Couples with significant differences in wealth or debt.
  • Business owners.
  • Those who wish to protect inheritances.

It’s also worth mentioning that divorce records are typically public, but prenups can be used to secure the confidentiality of information in the event of a divorce.

Considering a Prenuptial Agreement? Take the Next Step

If you have questions about whether you need a Prenuptial Agreement, don’t hesitate to contact the Matrimonial and Family Law Practice Group of Mandelbaum Barrett PC to schedule an appointment.