Kanye West’s 2005 smash-hit, Gold Digger, includes lyrics that, “if you ain’t no punk; holla, ‘we want prenup! We want prenup!’; It’s somethin’ that you need to have”. Certainly, an individual entering into marriage with prior wealth, should consider a prenuptial agreement. What should spouses do though who do not have a prenuptial agreement and receive wealth after marriage?
Unlike a prenuptial agreement, a post-nuptial agreement, as its name suggests, is entered into after marriage. Post-nuptial agreements are gaining in popularity amongst spouses who inherit property as a beneficiary of an estate or are pulled into the family business on the death of the parent.
Post-nuptial agreements are also being utilized as an estate planning protective measure.
Like a prenuptial agreement, a post-nuptial sets out how the assets of a married couple are to be distributed in the event of death or divorce, and can be as detailed as including the jurisdiction of the divorce and social media rules.
Entering into a post-nuptial agreement shouldn’t necessarily be viewed in a negative light. The process of going through a post-nuptial agreement can be a cathartic experience for couples – it is an opportunity to look at assets and debts, air grievances, and discuss important parameters in a marriage such as payments to children from a prior marriage.
Given that marriage brings about special legal rights and obligations, those considering a post-nuptial agreement should consider speaking with a professional.
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