The truth is that these agreements do not have a significant impact on the durability of marriages. What’s more is that there are many benefits spouses may realize from entering into a premarital agreement. We have outlined a few of these reasons below.
- Premarital agreements can prevent a contested, bitter divorce. Even though a premarital agreement does not spell certain doom for a marriage, the reality is that around half of all marriages end in divorce. A contested divorce (divorce that must go to court) often correlates with high tempers and generally intense emotions. Avoiding this situation by peacefully negotiating terms beforehand is beneficial for spouses and, especially, children of divorcing spouses.
- Separate property can be delineated. In the event of a divorce, each piece of property will be inventoried and classified as separate or community property. Unless there is “clear and convincing” evidence that a specific asset was owned prior to marriage, it is likely it will be designated as community property. A premarital agreement can protect sensitive items of either spouse in the event of a divorce.
- Spousal support can be laid out in a premarital agreement. With a high-net-worth divorce, there is an increased chance of disagreements related to support payments, called spousal maintenance. This is yet another area that can be settled in a premarital agreement. Spouses may also waive the right to spousal maintenance in the agreement.
- Protect children from prior relationships can be protected. Texas inheritance law gets quite complex for blended families. Having a solid premarital agreement in place before a divorce ensures that every child involved in the marriage is financially protected.
Who Needs a Premarital Agreement?
Any couple can benefit from a premarital agreement, but some have a greater need than others. Couples who are on their second or third marriage likely have children, assets, or even a business acquired during a previous relationship that should be addressed in an agreement. Any couple featuring a spouse with a significant amount of debt should also strongly consider entering into a premarital agreement.
As people are generally getting married later in life, the need for premarital agreements has increased. Though it might be somewhat awkward to think about when you are about to marry the love of your life, you could benefit from talking to an experienced Texas family law attorney about what you could gain from having a premarital agreement. Reach out to Branch Family Law today and get started with a consultation.