Considerations when considering a prenuptial agreement

Given the frequency of marriage break-ups today, There is a good chance that you either know someone who has been divorced, or have been through a divorce yourself. So if you are thinking about getting married or remarried, you may be wondering how a prenuptial agreement works and whether you should consider entering into one.

The concept of a prenuptial agreement is simple: it allows you to hedge your bets that your marriage will end sometime short of, “‘Until death do us part.” Such an agreement lets you take more control over matters like the roles of the spouses during a marriage, as well as personal and marital asset distribution upon the end of the marriage, or even to whom assets may be transferred if you or your spouse dies.

A prenuptial agreement is not required before getting married, nor is it always advisable. But in some situations, such as when you may have certain assets that you do not want to potentially leave to the mercy of Utah divorce laws and a judge’s interpretation of those laws, it may make sense to consider one with your spouse-to-be.

Prenuptial agreements are like any other contract: although they are enforceable under the law if they are valid, there are a number of potential pitfalls to watch out for when writing one. Most of these traps are obvious, such as not putting the agreement down into writing, or failing to sign it, or not giving or being given a chance to read it before signing it. Other possible problem areas are less visible to someone unfamiliar with these agreements, such as an agreement that attempts to override Utah law concerning child support obligations. 

Prenuptial agreements are common enough today that there are even “do-it-yourself” kits available. It may still be advisable, though, if you do not have a family law attorney to draft your agreement, to at least have one review it to make sure that it does not contain anything that would cause you trouble in case you ever have to execute its provisions.

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