Prenuptial Agreements

Prenup Attorneys in Columbia, Maryland

Everything You Should Know About Signing a Prenup in Maryland

Prenuptial agreements (also called prenups, premarital agreements, or antenuptial agreements) establish how a couple will handle asset division and navigate a potential divorce should one come to pass. Signed before both parties marry, prenups offer couples a way to protect their assets and shield themselves from the potentially devastating ramification of a contested divorce.

Understanding how the state of Maryland handles prenups will help you draft a comprehensive prenup with your fiance(e). Our compassionate, experienced attorneys at Ward & Co Law can help you understand the ins and outs of prenups and draft an agreement that meets your requirements.

Why Do People Get Prenuptial Agreements?

For decades, the term 'prenup' has carried an unjustified stigma. Many people mistakenly view prenups as a sign that a married couple has "given up" or resigned themselves to a future divorce before their marriage has even started.

The truth is, prenuptial agreements are incredibly useful legal contracts that can help spouses enter their marriage with an extra layer of security and safety. By signing a prenup with your fiance(e), you insulate both you and your partner from the adverse effects of divorce. Many couples find that their relationship becomes stronger after signing a prenup because they know their partner has no ulterior motive for marrying them.

Couples are increasingly finding value in prenups. Millennials are signing prenups more than previous generations, indicating that prenups are only increasing in popularity.

Should I Get a Prenuptial Agreement with My Partner?

Even if you understand the benefits of prenups, it can be hard to know whether you should get one with your partner. You should consider seeking a prenuptial agreement if you:

  • Have high-net-worth assets, such as property or investments, that you want to protect. You can stipulate in your prenup that these assets remain yours in the case of a divorce.
  • Have children from a pre-existing marriage or relationship that you want to protect. If you have children from a pre-existing relationship, a prenup can help you preserve their inheritance or other assets.
  • Want to protect your credit. Divorces can destroy your credit, but not if a prenup is signed.
  • Want to protect your income. Everyone's heard a horror story or two about individuals forced to pay obscene alimony to their ex. A prenup can protect your income in the event of a divorce.
  • Own a business. A prenup can help you protect your business if a divorce occurs, so you don't have to worry about sinking your passion project to pay for alimony or settle a divorce.
  • Have an idea you want to protect. Prenups can also protect decisions you make during the marriage, such as starting a new business or making a new investment, from suffering during a divorce. If you think you'll come to possess high-net-worth assets during the marriage or have an idea you want to protect, a prenup is a good idea.

Remember, the purpose of a prenup is not to make one partner get more out of marriage than their significant other. Prenups simply help couples ensure the divorce process is fair and equitable for both parties if a divorce occurs in the future.

How Can I Get a Prenuptial Agreement in Maryland?

To receive a prenup in Maryland, you and your partner will each need your own attorney. Your attorneys will improve your understanding of the legality of prenups and will also help you and your fiance(e) draft a comprehensive, fair prenup that both parties are satisfied with.

While there are no hard or fast rules for what should be contained in a prenuptial agreement, consider the following factors while negotiating your prenup with your partner:

  • All debts and assets each individual possesses before marriage, and how those debts and assets will be divided in the event of a divorce.
  • What rights each spouse has to make investments (such as buying new property or starting a business) during the marriage, and how those assets will be handled during a divorce.
  • Whether a spouse should pay the other alimony or child support.
  • Whether retirement accounts should be merged or kept separate.
  • How to handle inheritance for children from pre-existing relationships and this relationship.
  • Whether the spouses will draft living wills and a last will and testament that align with the prenup.
  • How insurance policies such as life insurance should be handled during the marriage.

Depending on your circumstances, your attorneys may also ask you to consider additional factors in your prenup. Trust your attorney to serve your best interests, and listen carefully if they have advice.

Contact an Experienced Maryland Family Law Attorney Today

Since 1997, Ward & Co Law has served families and individuals in the Columbia area. Our knowledgeable, committed attorneys can help you negotiate the ideal prenup with your partner.

To receive a free consultation from our legal team, contact us online or via phone at (410) 775-5955.

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