Eric S. Neumann, APLC
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When is a prenup needed?

A couple ending their marriage in Louisiana may have to face disputes over property division, especially in a high-asset divorce. Entering a prenuptial agreement allows couples to decide how their property will be divided, along with other issues, instead of leaving life-altering decisions to a family court judge during divorce proceedings.

A prenup is especially advisable in certain situations. First, a prenup requires disclosure of both parties' assets and can reveal that one spouse is much wealthier than the other. This agreement can demonstrate that the richer spouse is being married because of their qualities instead of their wealth.

Likewise, a prenup is beneficial when one spouse is much poorer than their partner. It can help guarantee some financial protection if the couple divorce. The prenuptial agreement can also address alimony matters. It can set forth the amount and the duration of this spousal support.

A prenup is especially beneficial for a spouse who remarries and may have different legal and financial interests than their first marriage. These include children, alimony and child support obligations and ownership of their home or other major assets.

A prenup can help govern the distribution of property to family members when the spouse dies in accordance with their wishes. It can prevent an ex-spouse from attacking the spouse's estate plan and guarantee that specified heirlooms remain in the family.

When a marriage ends, an ex-spouse can also own part of the other spouse's business against the business partners' wishes. A prenup can restrict the ex-spouse from receiving part of the business when the marriage ends.

A spouse should also consider a prenup if they plan to quit their job to raise the couple's children. This can greatly diminish that spouse's income and wealth. Under a prenuptial agreement, both spouses will share the economic burden of raising a family.

Each partner should obtain an attorney to discuss these agreements and present options well before they are married. An experienced attorney can help assure that these agreements are and protect a person's financial and legal interests.

Source: Prenuptialagreements.org, "8 reasons why you should get a prenuptial agreement," Accessed Oct. 31, 2017

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