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Ways to get the most out of a prenuptial agreement

When considering marriage, the concept of simultaneously considering divorce via the creation of a prenuptial agreement can be hard for many Michigan couples to contemplate. However, realities about property division, especially if a business is involved or if one or both spouses high significant financial holdings, can make a premarital contract a wise decision.

An article in the media recently reviewed some common problems that couples experience with premarital agreements and advising people to beware of these situations. Opting to include stipulations that are essentially unenforceable can not only lead to those provisions being nullified but the entire agreement. Examples of this would be a stipulation that requires one spouse maintain a certain hair color or style or that taking out the trash is always the husband’s responsibility.

The formality of the agreement also matters. Oral premarital contracts are rarely accepted. Agreements about property division, assets, retirement accounts and more should be in writing and have been drafted and reviewed by both parties’ independent attorneys. A premarital agreement that contains clauses related to the support or custody of any children can have a high rate of being considered invalid. Taking care to ensure that any agreement is not signed at a time or in a way that one spouse could have been considered to be coerced is also important.

Couples that are interested in drafting a prenuptial agreement to protect both parties in the unfortunate event of a divorce should take great care in the process. Working with the right legal advisors can be a very positive way of preventing problems down the road.

Source: Huffington Post, “10 Common Prenup Pitfalls,” David Centeno, November 4, 2013

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Lorrie J. Zahodnic

"I will hold you up until you can stand on your own two feet."

Lorrie J. Zahodnic, P.C. has provided skilled and compassionate legal guidance to Michiganders in family law matters for over 20 years.

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