Most people do not go into a marriage expecting it to end. However, statistics show that it is a reality many couples face.
For this reason, having some form of agreement in place as to what should happen during a divorce can aid the process. For those who did not opt to instate a prenuptial agreement, a postnuptial agreement may be beneficial.
Not a prenup
It is important to understand that a prenup and postnuptial agreement are two different documents. While they may include some of the same information and aid in dividing an estate upon dissolution of a marriage, they are still not synonymous, especially in the eyes of the court. While two parties sign and instate prenuptial agreements before the marriage, postnuptial agreements are between two current spouses, and the court must approve them. However, they can be beneficial for those who may not enter into a marriage with a large number of assets, but, instead, may amass property throughout the relationship.
Through a postnuptial agreement, parties agree on a variety of terms in their marriage. In particular, most people utilize their postnuptial agreement to identify marital and separate property and divide important assets. However, every relationship is different and may include additional terms, such as specific marital expectations, as long as they align with the state's marital laws.
As with any contract, the postnuptial agreement must uphold a few required components. The postnuptial agreement must be in writing and willfully signed by both spouses. The agreement should also be inclusive and fair to both parties.
Understanding these key facts about a postnuptial agreement can aid parties in deciding if it is right for them. It may also be beneficial for parties to discuss the idea with their significant other and a knowledgeable professional to ensure that it is the best option for the situation.