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Should you prepare for divorce before getting married?

Broaching the subject of a prenuptial agreement may not be on the to-do list when planning a wedding. Few Illinois residents want to talk about the possibility of getting a divorce while picking out flowers and tasting cakes for the wedding, but perhaps they should. Before bringing up the prospect of a prenup, it might be useful to know its benefits.

The first benefit is that many of the issues that arise during a divorce will already be decided. In a time when emotions run high, the division of assets and debts can quickly become contentious. Eliminating this possibility ahead of time often makes the divorce process less costly and saves time.

Any property or debts that an Illinois resident brings into the marriage can be identified as separate assets and liabilities. In the event of a divorce, each party could walk away with the items listed in the prenuptial agreement. Of course, any increase in value of some assets during the marriage could end up being considered marital property, but identifying such property as separate ahead of time will avoid that result or limit the amount. The parties can also outline each of their financial responsibilities and rights during the marriage as well.

Prenuptial agreements are not just for the wealthy anymore. Anyone who comes into a marriage with their own property and debts could benefit from one. No one goes into a marriage expecting to divorce, but being prepared for it could provide each party with peace of mind that if the worst does happen, they are prepared for it.

Source: FindLaw, "Can Prenuptial Agreements Help You?", May 28, 2017

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