Manhattan residents know what a prenuptial agreement is, how it works, and why it’s important. It’s not a piece of paper that tells the man or woman you’re marrying that you feel they are gold diggers only in this marriage for the money. It’s a piece of paper that protects your wealth, assets, business, and other personal interests in the event of a divorce. Signing a prenuptial agreement is not a sign you believe your marriage won’t last. It’s a wise financial and business move, and sometimes it’s motivated by business partners and family rather than you or your spouse.
The same is true of a postnuptial agreement, though many people feel that it’s a little lesser known than a prenup. The main difference between a pre- and postnuptial agreement is the timing. When you sign one after you’re already married, you change the “pre” to a “post” and call it a day. Signing a postnuptial agreement doesn’t require you hire an attorney, but it’s going to help your document hold up in court if ever your spouse tries to contest the wording, the inclusions, or even his or her own mental capacity at the time of signing.
Common Reasons to Sign a Postnuptial Agreement
Protection of your assets: If you go into your marriage with considerable assets, you might decide you’d like to protect them once you’re married. This might mean allotting it to the correct people, placing it where you best see fit, and dictating how your assets should be used upon your death.
Business interests: If you are a business owner or you and your spouse make the decision to start a business together, it’s imperative you learn how to protect both your interests in the business if the worst should happen.
Maintenance: This one is important especially for parents who agree to give up their own careers in favor of staying home with their kids. Giving up your income can be expensive if a divorce occurs, and you might want to be assured there is maintenance money there for you while you update professional certifications, finish your degree, or even attend trade school.
These are just a few of the most common reasons people decide they want to go through with a postnuptial agreement. In some marriages, the family of one partner encourages you to protect yourself and your family if you own a business with them or have family money to consider. It’s not always about you and your spouse. Sometimes it’s for your entire family and your business partners.
Call An Attorney
The best way to handle the postnuptial agreement phase of your marriage is to call an attorney who is well-versed in this type of documentation. An attorney can word your postnuptial agreement correctly, add things you may not have considered, and take it a step further by encouraging you both hire your own attorney to go over this paperwork to ensure it’s perfectly legal and fair to both.
An attorney will sign the document while you sign it, and they will have it notarized so it’s binding. This is the best way to ensure your postnuptial agreement is airtight in a court of law. If you have a postnuptial agreement you’d like to change or challenge in court, your attorney can work with you to help make this possible as well. Verbal agreements are invalid, and not using a professional to draw up the paperwork makes it very easy to challenge in court. Protect yourself by hiring an attorney to ensure it’s all done by the books.