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Prenup issues and preparations

The best time for a Maryland couple to think through the terms of a prenuptial agreement is well before the wedding is to take place. An agreement that is not clearly understood could result in serious conflicts if a divorce occurs. Because the rights of both partners are affected in a prenup, a good understanding of its implications is important before signing.

Many individuals view prenuptial agreements in a negative light, hoping that their marriages will last forever. However, divorce statistics suggest that a bit of advanced preparation could head off major conflicts. A prenuptial agreement should be assessed for fairness prior to signing because agreeing to the terms of a legally executed agreement may result in great difficulties if a later challenge is made to the terms.

Because of the legal implications of a prenuptial agreement, both parties should work with their own lawyers to ensure that there is not a bias in favor of one individual or the other. Although the costs are higher with two lawyers on the job, the potential savings in money, stress and sorrow could be significant. As courts tend to view agreements that are signed on the eve of the wedding to perhaps be signed by one of the parties out of coercion, it is important that the negotiations commence well in advance.

A prenuptial agreement can be a good idea for protecting personal assets before entering into matrimony. It can also help if there are properties or assets that are to be kept separate on behalf of children from another marriage. A person who expects to inherit certain assets might also use such an agreement to protect family property or keepsakes.

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