What is a Prenup and How to Incorporate It Into Your Estate Planning

A prenuptial agreement might be a good choice as you enter marriage

Are you wondering what a prenuptial agreement is and whether you should have one in your estate plan? In simple terms, a prenuptial agreement is a contract between two parties who intend to marry. This contract outlines exactly what property the parties agree to keep as separate, non-marital property. It details how property will be divided in the event of marriage dissolution or death of a spouse. At first, the agreement may have a negative connotation. Entering into a prenuptial agreement does not necessarily mean you do not have faith in your upcoming marriage. Here are two reasons why a prenuptial agreement is important:

Assure children outside the marriage receive estate property according to your wishes

Couples want to outline how their property will pass when they die if they have children outside the marriage. In most states, if you have a surviving spouse, you cannot leave your entire estate to your children. Surviving spouses can disregard the will and inherit up to one-half of the estate, depending on the state’s laws. A prenuptial agreement can ensure your property passes to your children and surviving spouse in the proportions you desire rather than the proportions outlined in your state’s laws.

You might wish to distribute pre-marital assets differently.

You might want to dictate to whom you wish to leave valuable assets acquired prior to the marriage. To rephrase it, without a prenuptial agreement, those assets may become part of your estate. Thus, they can be inherited by your spouse upon your death. A will or trust may be inadequate if you wish to leave those assets to someone other than your spouse. That is because of the rights given to spouses under the laws of most states. To conclude, including that information in a prenuptial agreement can ensure those assets pass according to your intentions.

Estate planning provides a solid foundation for a marriage.

If you are marrying, or remarrying, make sure you consult an attorney experienced in these issues. In that case you can be sure to incorporate a prenuptial agreement into your estate planning. Our office can guide a family through their estate planning options. Our estate planning lawyers take a very different approach from what you might have come to expect. We strive to create lifelong relationships with each of our clients, to guide and manage your estate plan for the rest of your life. Please contact our office to learn more.

Law Offices of John Mangan, PA
Palm City – Stuart, FL

CALL: 1 (772) 218-0480

Do you question the need for attorney guidance with so many online resources? Because laws and regulations are complex, and because every person has a lot at risk, more people than ever are seeking professional guidance from an experienced, knowledgeable source. That helps explain the rapid growth of our firm. Whether you happened upon this website by accident or are one of the many referrals we receive from a nearly 15-year collection of satisfied clients, our staff can provide customized estate planning guidance for you. Call us. Our number: 1 (772) 218-0480

Written by: John Mangan, JD, MBA

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