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Posted by on Apr 25, 2014 in Asset and Property Division, Prenuptial Agreement | 0 comments

The Advantages of Entering into a Prenuptial Agreement

A premarital agreement is a contract which people who are about to marry one another enter into: it is an agreement that clearly indicates how property and assets ought to be distributed in case of divorce, legal separation, or death. Though some may consider this to be an unromantic gesture, premarital agreements can help to provide spouses with a measure of security in their relationship, knowing that their futures are protected.

Pre-marital, prenuptial, and ante-nuptial agreements have long been a practice in the US. It was strongly enforced in 1848 through the Married Women’s Property Act. It was this act that gave women who entered into marriage their identity and rights back, since before this, a married woman’s legal existence was recognized only as extensions of her husband’s. This was due to the legal policy called coverture, a law that relinquished a woman’s legal rights upon marriage to her husband. Because of coverture, a married woman lost any right to own, sell, or transfer property, enter into contracts, earn a salary, or get an education without the consent of her husband and, even if her husband allowed her to work, the policy obliged her to surrender her earnings to him. Thus, in the event of divorce, she stood the chance of losing all her property to her husband.

History shows all the more how important a prenuptial agreement is. For both parties to appreciate its real value, though, it has to be talked about long before engagement, as openly and candidly as possible and with the help of qualified divorce attorneys who will make sure that both of your rights and interests are well protected. The process of divorce may become complicated without the guidance of someone who understands family or divorce law. The following are just some of the benefits this type of agreement can confer:

  • preservation of family ties and inheritance;
  • guaranteed protection of the children’s financial security earned from an earlier marriage;
  • protection over personal and business assets made prior to marriage
  • eliminates the need for lengthy and expensive asset and finance court settlements in case of divorce.

 

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Posted by on May 10, 2013 in Asset and Property Division | 0 comments

Asset Division: Community Property

When a married couple seeks a divorce, it must decide how to split its debts, assets, and property. If the spouses cannot negotiate a decision on its own, the divorce court will handle it for them.

The laws for how a court determines asset division vary from state to state. Most states follow an equitable distribution model, but Arizona, California, Idaho, Louisiana, New Mexico, Nevada, Texas, Washington, and Wisconsin use what is called “community property.”

community property is split evenly

In community property states, all of each spouse’s assets and debts are split right down the middle. Each spouse will be responsible for half of the debts accrued through the marriage and will be entitled to half of the assets.

However, there is a chance that a spiteful spouse will rack up new debt after making the decision to divorce, knowing he or she will be responsible for only half of it afterwards. An attorney can help you recognize and fight this unfair financial manipulation in court.

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Posted by on May 4, 2013 in Asset and Property Division | 0 comments

Asset Division: Equitable Distribution

When a married couple reaches the conclusion that it needs to separate, they will have to decide how to split up all of the assets, belongings, and debts they have acquired during the course of the marriage. They may be able to do so amicably, but most divorcing couples end up taking the matter to court.

The majority of states use an equitable distribution model. This means that the value of all the marriage’s assets are summed and each member receives an equitable amount of those assets. Keep in mind that equitable does necessarily mean a perfect half and half split. Instead, the court determines what is equitable through a number of factors such as:

  • Length of the marriage
  • Debts and assets each individual had entering wedlock
  • Earning capacity and potential
  • Childcare obligations

Because of variances in these factors, it is possible for one of the spouses to get next to none of the marriage’s assets when it is dissolved. It’s best to consult with a divorce attorney during this process to increase the likelihood you receive a deal that is fair to you in the divorce’s conclusion.

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