When you married, you likely were not thinking that your marriage would ever end in divorce. While you may not think divorce is likely for you, it is possible your financial circumstances have changed, and you may need more protection than you thought you needed in the past. A prenuptial agreement is not an option for you, but a postnuptial agreement could be the right choice.
There are many similarities between a prenup and a postnuptial agreement. Like any other type of marital contract, it is in your interests to work with a legal professional. Your financial interests are at stake, but when drafted the right way, this type of agreement can provide you with stability and security for years to come.
What does a postnuptial agreement do?
The main difference between a postnuptial agreement and a prenup is that you draft one before the marriage and one after you are already married. A postnuptial agreement allows you to outline how the division of property will work in case of a divorce. You can also do the following in your agreement:
- Outline a reasonable and fair distribution of marital debt in case of divorce.
- Specify what assets are marital property and which ones are not.
- Safeguard a family-owned business or an inheritance.
- Determine the amount and duration of spousal support payments.
This type of contract may make sense if you do not have a prenup and your financial circumstances have changed significantly since you married. It may also make sense if you or your spouse received an inheritance, one of you stopped working in order to raise the children or you want to protect the interests of children from a previous marriage.
Is it right for you?
Not every couple needs a postnuptial agreement, but this could be the right choice for your specific situation. An assessment of your case with an experienced Maryland attorney can help you understand how a marital contract may be beneficial for you and your spouse.
Drafting a contract does not mean you expect your marriage to end in divorce. It simply means you want to be prepared, protect your long-term interests and approach the future with confidence. Working with a legal professional from the beginning of this process can ensure your contract is enforceable and will withstand scrutiny in case of a dispute at some point.