Before a couple gets married, they should engage in an unromantic but important conversation about their finances and explore whether they should enter into a prenuptial agreement. These agreements help prevent some of the major causes of divorce and protect their rights during property division, if their marriage ends in a divorce.
Louisiana recognizes community property rights for married people, which means, generally speaking, that all of the property that people acquire after they have wed their spouses is considered equally owned by both of the partners to the marriage. Marital property is property that is owned by both individuals in a marriage and is subject to property division if they divorce.
Relationships and lifestyle during marriage can have an impact during divorce and require additional vigilance when the coupe undergoes property division. This has become apparent for spouses, particularly men, who end their marriages after they turn 50.
Louisiana is a community property state where, with some important exceptions, property acquired during the marriage by either spouse is "marital property" that can be divided during divorce. However, spouses can enter matrimonial agreements, such as a prenuptial agreement, that can renounce, modify or depart from the state's community property rules during property division in a divorce.
The classification of property acquired during marriage is vital for property division and what a spouse keeps or gives up following divorce. Louisiana is one of the nine "community property" states.
Having a physician as a spouse may have been considered the "marriage jackpot" at one point in time. However, marriages in which one of the spouses is a doctor may pose special divorce legal issues in Louisiana. These often involve situations in which the non-doctor spouse is seeking compensation for the sacrifices they made for their partner's medical education, career and income inequality.
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.