When you are in the process of getting remarried, a pre-nuptial agreement may be something you do not consider. Getting remarried is exciting and a happy time. You may be ready to start on a fresh path with someone new since you have already experienced tre end of a marriage.
However, a pre-nuptial agreement is extremely important during a second or subsequent marriage, especially if you have children. Here’s why.
You have more at stake now
Many first marriages occur when people are young and have not yet accumulated a lot of assets. This means that you do not generally have to worry about what happens to your property if you divorce.
Additionally, most people do not already have children when they get married for the first time.
However, many people are in their 30’s or 40’s when they remarry and have had time to establish themselves in careers, accumulate significant assets and have children. This means there is quite a bit more at risk of losing during a divorce.
These are important reasons why a pre-nuptial agreement is a good idea for a remarriage. A pre-nuptial agreement allows you to set the terms for how your property will be divided if you divorce and define each spouse’s rights in the marriage.
Advantages of a pre-nuptial agreement
Although you may feel like a pre-nuptial agreement is unnecessary or a bad choice, there are many benefits to having one. It could even strengthen your new marriage by relieving both you and your spouse of the stress of worrying about what will happen to property or finances if you divorce.
Your pre-nuptial agreement should be customized to reflect any unique circumstances of your situation. You might have child support obligations or other financial commitments to a former spouse that can be addressed in a pre-nuptial agreement.
A pre-nuptial agreement also protects property and assets that you want to keep. For example, you might be living in a home that was your former marital residence.
Your pre-nuptial agreement can outline the plan for what happens to that home. You and your new spouse might agree that it be classified as your separate property rather than marital property.
Remarriage often includes children on both sides of the marriage. A pre-nuptial agreement can serve as a valuable tool to protect them if your marriage ends. Perhaps you want your former marital residence to go to them if you divorce.
A pre-nuptial agreement can address death or incapacity
Finally, since remarriage by nature usually happens when you are older, the possibility of your marriage ending in death becomes more realistic. A pre-nuptial agreement can outline what you would like to happen to certain assets if you pass away or become incapacitated.
However, a pre-nuptial agreement should not be a substitution for a will. A pre-nuptial agreement can generally only address certain issues surrounding death or incapacitation.
Having already been through a divorce, you likely already know how stressful, costly and time-consuming the process can be. This is even more reason to establish a pre-nuptial agreement for your remarriage.