Using A Prenuptial Agreement For Estate Planning In Tampa
More and more couples in their fifties, sixties and seventies are pursuing a second or third marriage. While this is wonderful for the couple, if they have adult children or grandchildren, they may be concerned about their family inheritance should their new marriage end in divorce. This scenario is often played out with adult children expressing reservations about an elderly parent choosing to remarry without a prenuptial agreement. While it may not seem evident, a prenuptial agreement can be used as an estate planning tool.
Why a prenuptial agreement?
A prenuptial agreement sets out the terms between unmarried parties before they wed. The parties will list all assets and liabilities at the outset, to determine what is off limits should the marriage end in divorce. Contrary to popular belief, prenuptial agreements are not just for the wealthy. They are a great tool for all couples to discuss their assets and what they bring to the marriage before the marriage occurs.
A prenuptial agreement is not a guarantee that the marriage will end in divorce. Instead, it is actually a tool for both parties to consider and may reduce costs if a marriage did end in divorce, because there would not be a lengthy dispute about distribution of assets. Both parties should obtain legal assistance when reviewing a prenuptial agreement to ensure their interests are represented. Often if one party has counsel and the other doesn’t, it can look like the other party was strongarmed into signing. This means during divorce the other party could argue that they signed the agreement under duress, making it voidable. If a prenuptial agreement is something you want to consider, then both parties should be represented by outside counsel.
How Does it Relate to Estate Planning?
Adult children do not want to see their parents taken advantage of. Unfortunately, the reality is that some people enter into a marriage for financial gain for the wrong reasons. Signing a prenuptial agreement takes the possibility of a financial windfall in divorce off the table. It is especially useful for engaged parties that have children or grandchildren from a previous marriage who they want to protect. For example, a woman in her 70s is getting married for the second time. She has five children and ten grandchildren whom she wants to inherit her home, personal property, and intellectual property. Without a prenuptial agreement, should her spouse outlive her, he would inherit all of her assets despite what might be written in her last will and testament. With a prenuptial agreement, the parties decide what assets are protected should the marriage end up in divorce. The parties should also revise their last will and testament after nuptials to reflect what has changed.
Call Tampa Family & Estate Planning Lawyers at Bubley & Bubley
If you just got engaged, the last thing on your mind is signing a prenuptial agreement. But if this is not your first marriage, or you have children and grandchildren you want to provide for, a prenuptial agreement can offer you and your beneficiaries peace of mind. If you have questions about other estate planning tools, call our Tampa family law attorneys at Bubley and Bubley. We are a boutique law firm dedicated to serving clients throughout Greater Tampa, Call today to schedule a consultation.