it does not occur to many couples to enter into a prenuptial, or premarital, agreement. There are numerous reasons for this; one is that some people associate prenups with extremely wealthy couples. Another reason is that there is a false perception that protecting your finances before marriage means that you do not trust your partner. Finally, many couples simply do not understand the breadth of what a prenup can do not to just address finances, but to address spousal support or other matters incident to a marriage.
While prenups do offer security to those with lucrative businesses and an array of assets, they are there to offer protection to anyone. Including such legal instruments in your marriage plans could actually be of great benefit to you.
Property can be clearly defined
In the event that your marriage does not work out, the division of property and assets will be a key aspect of divorce proceedings. In the absence of a prenuptial agreement, your state laws will operate as a “de factor” prenup, meaning that the state laws governing identification, classification, and valuation will govern. Where property has not been clearly defined, contentious disputes, as well as lengthy litigation procedures, may arise. Ultimately, this means that it will be up to the court to decide who is assigned what based on the laws of the state. Having a prenup in place means that you retain some control over how property is classified and divided during a separation. This can be extremely beneficial if you have built a business independently from your spouse or intend to put effort into that business during the course of the marriage.
Divorce can be more efficient
Generally, couples want the divorce procedure to be over as soon as is practicable. A prenup offers a means of facilitating this by helping spouses determine at the outset of their marriage how they want to address specific incidents of their marriage in the event of a divorce. Lengthy conflicts and costly legal battles can be fueled by uncertainty. A prenup provides clarity over issues that may otherwise be highly contested. Not only will this save you time and money in the long run, but it also reduces the chances of you being overcome by stress and anxiety. It also helps each spouse decide how to invest their time and money over the course of the marriage.
A prenuptial agreement can provide an opportunity to begin your marriage on the right footing. When constructing such agreements, it is vital to understand your legal rights as a spouse in Virginia. It is also vital to understand what goes into creating a valid prenup. The attorneys at Maddox & Gerock, P.C. can assist with advising you about the requirements and benefits of a prenuptial agreement.