How Long Does a Prenup Last?


A Prenup in Simple Terms

Prenups have long been referenced in pop culture, and this is one legal contract that has become the butt of many jokes. However, a prenup, or prenuptial agreement, is no laughing matter, and has proven to be quite helpful in resolving issues and distributing marital assets in cases where the marriage becomes unsuccessful. This written contract between two people who are getting married lists the property each person owns and specifies what each person’s property rights will be after the marriage. Prenups usually last for the entire length of the marriage, but some prenups can include provisions that expire. One example of such a provision is that there will not be spousal support unless the couple is married for at least 10 years. Those who choose to have prenuptial agreements can experience the following benefits:

  • Protection of pre-marital assets

A prenuptial agreement can ensure that the assets acquired before the marriage are separate from marital assets. These assets can include cash, real estate, superannuation, investments, businesses, inheritance, and pension entitlements. Most prenuptial agreements protect all assets. These assets are jointly acquired during the marriage and can be shared equally.

  • Reduction of conflicts in the future

In the case that your marriage comes to a close, you will likely be faced with a variety of conflicts. If you sign a prenuptial agreement, you will have one less cause for concern. You can also significantly reduce the amount of time it takes to get your divorce case settled.

  • Protection of the financial stability of children involved

If any children were had during the marriage, a prenuptial agreement can clear up any confusion and help to avoid potential financial mistakes. Specifically, a prenup can help guarantee that if the children are the rightful beneficiaries of specific assets, they receive those assets rather than the spouse.

  • Simplification of the divorce process

If there is no prenuptial agreement in the marriage, the result can be extended court proceedings and more expensive attorney fees. Because a prenuptial agreement helps both parties understand how to move forward before any of this occurs, it helps expedite the process and helps both parties move forward with their lives peacefully.

  • Assigning of debts

Thanks to these agreements, there can be far less confusion surrounding how debt will be distributed between the two parties. You will already have a clear understanding of how to navigate these matters prior to the divorce, which will take some of the weight off your shoulders.

  • Avoiding of the state dividing your property

Without a prenup, the division of your assets could be left up to a judge who will make the determination based on their interpretation of the situation. A prenup brings a sense of clarity to this situation, leaving no room for guesswork when it comes to dividing property or assets.

  • Ensuring family assets remain in the family

It is not uncommon for parents to ask their children to sign prenups before entering into their marriage to avoid unwanted spreading of the family assets. If the parents of one of the parties plan to leave an inheritance, it is understandable that they would want the inheritance to go to their child and not their child’s ex-spouse.

  • Protection of any businesses involved

In a prenup, you have the option to designate your business as separate property. This will prevent the need to liquidate it in a divorce. Many couples in which one spouse owns a business choose to enter into prenuptial agreements for that reason. It prevents the possibility of having to distribute the business in the case of a divorce.

To learn more about family law representation or to begin the process of signing a prenuptial agreement, call Shaw Family Law, L.L.C. at (205) 259-7650 or contact us online.