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Does a prenup help when dividing assets?

The dissolution of a marriage is never an easy thing for any couple to go through and can sometimes become downright contentious depending on the circumstances. This can especially become the case in high-asset divorces where there is more at stake and a lot to lose for many couples. But is there something that Missouri couples can do prior to a marriage that can stop these problems before they even occur? The answer is yes, but it may not be for everyone.

The first thing to remember with a high net-worth divorce is that the couple will not only be dividing their assets but their debts as well. And if one spouse makes more than the other or if one spouse came into the marriage with a considerable amount of debt that is still present, then situations can become contentious and quickly. Most family law experts advise couples whose assets are over $200,000 to consider what is called a prenuptial agreement. This legal document is signed before a couple marries and can establish everything from how each spouse should conduct themselves in the marriage to how assets and debts will be divided by the couple in the event of a divorce.

Although the discussion of a prenuptial agreement can often be difficult for even the most communicative of couples, it can save people from a lot of frustrations down the road.  By establishing the couple’s expectations in the marriage when they are both on agreeable terms can prevent the argumentative discussions that can happen during a divorce.  With heightened emotions and an overwhelming desire to protect oneself, people often are not thinking rationally, which often leads to many of the contentions and holds ups people most commonly associate with the divorce process.

Source: Reuters News, "Three things to consider before you ask for a pre-nup," Geoff Williams, Nov. 27, 2013

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