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The role of a prenuptial agreement in divorce

Couples in Georgia may think they do not need a prenuptial agreement if they are not wealthy. However, people who are getting married and who own a retirement account or who have other investments may want to reconsider. A prenup can help protect the assets a person brings into a marriage. It can also protect assets for any children a person may have from a previous relationship.

Some people may assume that they do not need a prenup since any property they have at the time of the marriage will be considered separate property. In fact, this can be more complex. If shared assets are used for the property in any way, it might be considered marital property. This could be the case for a home if the mortgage is paid with income that is earned during the marriage.

A prenup can set parameters that are different from those that the state would ordinarily require in case of divorce. For example, it could say that if an asset acquires value, the original owner keeps it regardless of where the funds that increased its value came from. Another use of a prenup is to waive alimony claims. Prenups can also be used in conjunction with estate plans.

Creating a prenup can force a couple into conversations about money that can be valuable since finances are often an area of conflict in marriage. However, prenups must be prepared correctly. The purpose behind them is to protect both individuals, and a judge may dismiss a prenup that appears to be one-sided. This could also happen if one spouse does not seem to have received adequate legal counsel or if it appears that one has been coerced into signing it. Couples who do not have a prenup may still be able to negotiate an amicable agreement for property division.

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