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How can a prenuptial agreement protect me from my partner's debt?

Many couples choose not to create a prenuptial agreement because they feel as though, somehow, doing so weakens their marriage before it even begins. This is simply not true! In fact, creating a prenuptial agreement can offer you and your partner vital protections even if you never get divorced.

One of most useful features of a prenuptial agreement is its ability to protect spouses from each other's personal debt. Without creating protections against it, debt is considered shared marital property, like a joint savings account. This means that once you are married, your spouse's creditors can come after your property because of your spouse's debt. A prenuptial agreement can prevent this, strengthening your marriage, not weakening it.

Beyond this very practical advantage, creating a prenuptial agreement with your partner is an invaluable way to truly get to know a side of him or her you may not see otherwise. Financial conflicts are one of the most common difficulties in any marriage, and the more you know about each other's financial life, the more you can avoid those conflicts inside the marriage. Unfortunately, many spouses simply never learn about their partner's financial habits until they become a point of contention that threatens the stability of the relationship.

If you believe that you're ready to create a strong prenuptial agreement to protect the person you love, don't wait to reach out for professional guidance. A well-intentioned agreement is only as useful as it is legally sound, after all. The guidance of an experienced attorney can help ensure that your marriage starts off on strong footing with an agreement that fits your relationship perfectly while protecting each party's rights.

Source: findlaw, "What Can and Cannot be Included in Prenuptial Agreements," accessed May 11, 2017

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