If you are getting married, one of the last things you are probably thinking about is divorce. Unfortunately, ignoring the subject of divorce doesn’t change the fact that many relationships ultimately end this way.
As such, it can be crucial that you take seriously the option to protect yourself and your property with a prenuptial agreement. This may seem obvious if you have a lot of money, but cash isn’t the only asset worth protecting in a prenup.
Other assets you may want to protect with a prenuptial agreement include the following.
- Pets: For better or worse, pets are considered property in the eyes of the law. While courts are increasingly allowing divorcing couples to treat pets more like children in need of custody and support, there is no guarantee this will happen. If you want to ensure you keep your pet or any valuable animal in a split, consider including such a clause in a prenuptial agreement.
- New businesses: Even if your business is still getting off the ground, you can protect it as a separate asset. There is no telling what might happen to the business five, 10 or 20 years from now, but it can be wise to protect it as a separate asset entitling you to retain any appreciation.
- Family heirlooms: If you have specific pieces of property that you want to keep in your family, then you can include it in your prenup. You can include future inheritances you plan to receive as well.
- Inventions or creations: If you hold a trademark, patent or copyright, then the protected material could someday have far more value than it does today, which makes it worthy of protection in a prenup. You might even consider protecting future creations of your mind if you are in such a field where this would be relevant.
Before you make the mistake of marrying without a prenuptial agreement because you don’t think you have anything to protect, you might consider discussing your status with an attorney. Getting a legal perspective can be crucial in helping you avoid costly missteps.