Why You Should Get A Postnuptial Agreement Before Separation?

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Often overlooked and forgotten, postnuptial agreement is starting to become an important legal document for married couples considering divorce. As the name suggests, it is a document that you sign after the wedding and outlines how your assets, debt, and responsibilities will be divided if you choose to separate. If you have a prenup, then you don’t need to create a postnuptial agreement, unless there are major changes that you’d like to include. 

How Does a Postnuptial Agreement Work Before Separating?

Postnup kicks in when a couple decides to part ways, and works as a predetermined guide to deal with property, financial assets, and even spousal support. It narrows down the separation process as everything was previously agreed upon. 

However, for successful execution, both spouses must agree with the postnup and not challenge it. If so, a judge will review the agreement and may deem it unfair. If spouses agree, it takes away the emotional and financial strain of drawn-out legal disputes.

A good postnuptial agreement covers many key areas to ensure both parties are protected. These include:

  • Asset and Property Division: Specify which assets are considered marital property and how they will be divided including real estate, investments, and personal property acquired during the marriage.
  • Debt Allocation: Clearly outline who will be responsible for any debts incurred before or during the marriage to avoid unfair debt burdening post separation 
  • Spousal Support: If applicable, detail the terms of spousal support, including duration and amount. 
  • Retirement Benefits: Address how any retirement benefits will be divided.
  • Child Support and Custody: While not always included, some agreements may touch on child support and custody arrangements to provide a preliminary framework. However, be prepared for the court to invalidate any child support and custody clauses as they will take a decision that’s best for your kids. 
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How to Start the Topic of a Postnuptial Agreement with Your Spouse?

If you are in the middle of talking about separation, be careful with the words you use. Broach the topic from a place of love and mutual respect and emphasize your desire to protect your spouse through a fair and equitable resolution. 

  • Find a calm, stress-free time to discuss the topic. You can ask your partner when they will be in the mindset to talk and listen to you. 
  • Make it clear that your motivation is not distrust but a desire to ensure fairness and security for both of you, regardless of what the future holds.
  • Suggest consulting with a legal professional in Brampton together to understand the benefits and implications fully. Lawyers can help demystify the process and address any concerns your spouse may have. Make sure to tell them that they can reach out to a legal counsel by themselves if they don’t want you to be present.
  • Be prepared to listen to your spouse’s views and concerns. Make them feel validated and if you don’t have answers tell them you’ll get back after some research and thinking.

Why You Should Consider a Postnuptial Agreement Before Separation

In simple words – to quickly process the divorce once you’ve completed a year of separation. A postnup makes the flow of life predictable and offers security to both spouses. You don’t have to pay thousands of dollars in lawyer fees and fight in court but can settle for an out-of-court settlement. 

It also gives you a chance at protecting individual assets and inheritances, which are divided equally if there’s no prenup or postnup agreement. If separation is temporary, a postnup gives the couple the chance to strengthen their marriage. You may discuss financial and legal concerns openly in the presence of a mediator and eliminate any potential source of conflict. 

Sterling Law in Brampton offers speedy postnuptial drafting services. Our experienced family lawyers ensure we cover all areas of concern and discuss them with your spouse’s lawyer before drafting the agreement. Please get in touch to book a free first consultation (up to 15 minutes only).

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