A prenuptial agreement can be useful for couples of any age. Between the high divorce rate and the better quality of life older adults generally experience today, it is not uncommon for couples to fall in love and get married well into their 50s, 60s, and beyond. Age, maturity, and lessons learned from previous relationships can benefit older adults and their relationships, making a second or third marriage much more likely to succeed. However, there are important issues in these situations that may need to be addressed and the best way to do so may be through a prenuptial agreement. As an experienced New Jersey family law practice, we want you to be aware of the ways a prenup can protect you and your loved one, while actually helping to strengthen your relationship and your marriage.
The Benefits of a Prenuptial Agreement
Under Section 37:2-34 of the New Jersey Statutes, a prenuptial agreement is a legally binding document, similar to a contract, that a couple enters into prior to getting married. It goes into effect the day of the marriage and outline each person’s rights and obligations in regards to any individually or jointly owned property and assets they possess or are likely to acquire in the future. This includes the right to buy, sell, trade, use, mortgage, invest, or otherwise manage real estate, personal belongings, financial accounts, and any other assets included in the agreement. There are numerous benefits for any couple in entering into a prenuptial agreement, which include:
- Provides a complete inventory of all property and assets owned individually and jointly;
- Provides disclosure of all individual debts and financial obligations;
- Allows the couple to discuss spending habits, savings goals, and the quality of life they intend to enjoy over the course of the marriage;
- Lays the groundwork for open, honest communications about money.
As money is one of the leading causes of tension, disagreements, and arguments among married couples and a leading factor in many divorce proceedings, the opportunities provided by sitting down with your attorney and discussing a prenuptial agreement and the surrounding terms can help to clarify these issues, which can actually strengthen your marriage.
Why a Prenup is Important for Older Adult Couples
A prenuptial agreement is a good idea for any engaged couple, but it is a particularly smart move for older adults. BankRate advises that especially when dealing with second and third marriages, there are complex issues regarding property ownership and children from past relationships that often must be addressed. In your prenup, you can designate what is ‘yours, mine, and ours’, while protecting family businesses and the inheritance rights of children or former spouses by specifically designating premarital assets that are off limits. You can also protect any agreements made with former spouses, such as to provide alimony or insurance, which could be jeopardized once you are legally married to someone else.
While a prenuptial agreement does not take the place of estate planning documents, it can also provide older couples with some clarification in these areas, as well. You can detail rights to ownership of a home that was previously purchased and listed in only one person’s name. You can also details plans in the event one of you requires long term care or needs to be placed in a nursing home.
Contact Our New Jersey Family Law Attorney Today
At the Law Office Of Jordan B. Rickards, we can answer your questions about prenuptial agreements and other issues involved in second and third marriages. Contact our Miltown, NJ family law attorney and request a consultation today.