Getting married is perhaps the biggest life decision that you’ll ever make. Not only is it a decision about how you want to spend your life, but it’s also a large financial decision, too. For individuals who want to protect their assets and reduce the risk of litigation in the event of a divorce, a prenuptial agreement is strongly recommended. If you’re already married, however, you may be wondering whether it’s too late to get a prenuptial agreement. While a prenuptial agreement refers to an agreement that’s entered into before you say “I do,” a postnuptial agreement is a viable alternative for those who are already married. Here’s what you should know about postnuptial agreements in Massachusetts—
What Is a Postnuptial Agreement?
A postnuptial agreement, also known as a postnup or a marital agreement, is a legal arrangement that outlines how assets will be divided in the event of a divorce or the death of one party to the marriage; it may also address the management of financial assets during the course of a marriage. The only difference between a postnup and a prenup is just when the agreement is entered; a prenup is entered into prior to marriage and a postnup is created after marriage.
What Can Be Included in a Postnup?
A postnuptial agreement typically addresses financial matters. For example, a postnup may be used to address:
- Who will manage finances during a marriage
- Which party to the marriage will have the right to buy or sell real estate or other assets during the marriage
- How assets will be divided during a divorce
- Whether alimony (spousal maintenance) will be part of a divorce settlement
Things that cannot be included in a postnuptial agreement include decisions about child support or child custody. Anything that is in violation of the law also cannot be included.
Who Should Get a Postnup?
Getting a postnuptial agreement is a great way for both parties to a marriage to protect their assets. In addition to protecting assets, when a postnuptial agreement is in place, the divorce process—should the marriage end in divorce—is often much smoother and less controversial, as critical decisions related to spousal support and division of property have already been made. This can reduce conflict and legal costs later on.
Call the Law Office of Heather M. Ward Today
If you are thinking about forming a postnuptial agreement, it’s important to talk to a qualified attorney. At the Law Office of Heather M. Ward, our Massachusetts family and divorce lawyer has experience helping couples form marital agreements—both post- and prenuptials. To learn more about forming a postnuptial agreement and working with Attorney Heather M. Ward, call our law office directly today at (617) 903-8955 or send us a message online.