What to include in a Pre-nuptial Agreement
Pre-nuptial agreements, arranged with the help of an Ontario lawyer, can be a bone of contention between couples, because it can seem as though a husband and wife-to-be are focusing on getting divorced even before the marriage ceremony has even taken place!
I do (or I don’t?!)
It is an unavoidable fact however that approximately just over one-third of marriages don’t make it to the finish line and so it is crucial and only sensible to protect yourself financially in the event of your marriage becoming part of this statistic. In doing so you also actually protect yourself emotionally. A prenup can actually provide the peace of mind to start your married life with confidence; knowing that should things go wrong, you have a contract in place to ensure that division of assets is both fair and legally enforceable in a court of law.
What exactly do I need to include?
1. Any personal assets
It may be that you own a company; perhaps built up from scratch that you would not want to risk losing in the event of a divorce or separation. Adding your business as a separate personal asset would protect and maximise your future earning income should you and your partner go your separate ways as they would not be entitled to a share. You may also own your own property or an item such as a family heirloom that you want to keep within your family. If you secure your personal assets in a pre-nuptial agreement, with the help of a lawyer in Ontario then you have the reassurance that someone who can be become a complete stranger during or after divorce proceedings is not going to walk off with anything of great value to you.
2. Dependent children
Any dependent children; either from a previous relationship or as a result of your marriage will need to be financially taken care of in the event of a separation or divorce and a pre-nuptial agreement can determine your exact wishes as to how any property and assets; whether personal or joint will be used to financially support dependent children.
3. Details of your estate
Many people think in terms of a will/living will when they plan how to leave their estate, but a pre-nuptial agreement can also be used as an essential estate planning document too. In the unfortunate event of ’til’ death us do part’; a prenup can prove a valuable guide in separating personal assets from those that may be acquired during the marriage meaning that you can decide what your partner will receive as part of your estate and what will be inherited by your children or other family members.
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