Years ago, only the wealthy or celebrities entered into a pre-marital contract in order to protect family wealth. However, almost every couple can benefit from the protections that a properly drafted prenuptial agreement provides. Texas residents may benefit from learning more about how these contracts can serve them.
It is estimated that approximately one in three marriages will end in a divorce. Though the idea of discussing a prenup with an intended spouse may seem awkward, it is recommended that this conversation take place shortly after the engagement in order to ensure that both parties are in full agreement without accusations of coercion at a later date. In addition, couples are required to be open about all aspects of their assets when working on these contracts in order for them to be valid. Withholding information may result in a prenup being overturned in a contested divorce.
A prenup deals with the basic division of marital assets and property in the event that a couple chooses to end their marriage. It is important to include all assets and expected potential assets, such as inheritances or business holdings. A prenup is not meant to dictate the role that each spouse is expected to fulfill in the marriage, as these aspects are generally not enforced by a court. They also cannot be used to settle such matters as child custody or support, as these are issues for a court to determine.
A well-written prenuptial agreement can greatly reduce the amount of conflict that often occurs during divorce proceedings. Though it is possible to draft a valid contract shortly before the vows are exchanged, it is better for a couple to enter into the planning well before the wedding and for each party to retain separate counsel in order to ensure that each one is fairly represented. Texas residents may choose to consult with an experienced attorney to learn more about these contracts or other family law aspects.