Some couples know before they get married that they need to protect themselves. They may have valuable property or unusual situations that demand a prenuptial agreement.
Most people get married without a marital agreement in place, and some will later regret that lack of foresight. If you find yourself in one of the two situations below, you may be a good candidate for drafting a postnuptial agreement.
Your marriage has hit a rough patch
Whether you have had a hard time adjusting to living together again after your children moved out or there have been major conflicts recently, you may feel like your marriage may not stand the test of time. Those who think they may be on the cusp of divorce can benefit from negotiating a postnuptial agreement with their spouse.
The agreement itself will protect you if you divorce by allowing for a smoother, uncontested filing. When you settle major terms while still willing to cooperate, you avoid the messy litigation that often occurs in litigated divorces when emotions run the show.
For some couples, the obligation to talk about divorce in postnuptial agreement negotiations can be a real wake-up call. Recognizing the seriousness of the issues and identifying the likely outcome of divorce might motivate the couple to invest more work in the marriage and save the relationship.
You just inherited significant property
Although your inheritance should be separate property, you can make mistakes in how you manage it that will compromise your sole ownership rights. Your spouse could also develop an unrealistic sense of entitlement, especially if you give them access to those assets during the marriage.
An unexpected windfall later in life when a loved one dies can be a good reason to consider a postnuptial agreement. You can designate the inheritance you receive as separate property and protect it in the event of a divorce. People starting businesses or receiving large gifts from loved ones may also want a postnuptial agreement for the same kind of protection.
Drafting a postnuptial agreement may help you avoid a divorce or at the very least can lead to a smoother and less frustrating divorce process.