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Prenuptial agreement makes property division less stressful

Earlier this month we discussed a celebrity couple who is choosing to work out a prenuptial agreement before they get married. They are just two of many people, celebrities and non-celebrities alike, who are starting to protect their future with this type of agreement.

Prenuptial agreements can help protect a person's assets in the event of a divorce. Often these agreements make the task of property division much simpler and less frustrating for both spouses.

Interestingly, attorneys are finding that the number of couples choosing to have a prenuptial agreement has been growing over the past several years. Though couples do not enter into marriage thinking that divorce will just happen down the line, statistics show that divorce is a reality for a number of people. Planning ahead can make the process go more smoothly.

While many may think prenuptial agreements are only for people with a large number of assets, anyone can benefit from it. Often couples enter into marriage with things they owned prior to the marriage. But during the marriage, both spouses also bring in property that is shared and used by both.

When a couple chooses to get a divorce, everything that was acquired during the marriage has to be divided and distributed between the two. That includes but is not limited to property such as bank accounts, real estate, and even retirement plans. If no prenuptial agreement exists, the property is divided accordingly as dictated by the laws of the state.

But a prenuptial agreement can help eliminate any element of surprise when the property is divided. Each spouse would know what property is theirs because it was agreed upon in the prenup. The divorce process can be an extremely emotional period of time for all involved - a prenuptial agreement could help alleviate some of the stress.

Source: CNN Money online, "Getting married? Get a prenup," Janice Revell, 29 June 2011

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