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Prenups offer finance lessons for the inexperienced

When couples enter into a marriage without a lot of financial planning under their belts, a divorce later on can prove just how valuable such experience could have been.

With more and more young adults carrying student loan debt in addition to car loans and credit card debt, prenuptial agreements are emerging as a practical solution. While traditionally viewed as detrimental to women, prenups are now a useful tool for both husbands and wives to plan their financial futures -- together or apart.

Thanks to the popularity and abundance of student loans, those marrying during or shortly after college nowadays may not have extensive experience with budgeting, investing, managing debt, or even outlining their basic financial obligations. Consequently, the realities of the working world and a rough economy can thwart the financial learning curve.

Members of older generations may also have missed out on these financial life lessons. According to a representative from a credit counseling service that sees many female clients, some divorced women realize they are novices at creating a financial plan.

Whether they were stay-at-home mothers whose husbands managed the money, or busy working women who oversaw spending but weren't intimately involved with other financial matters, many women often had little need to acquaint themselves with lessons on money.

Those who utilize prenuptial agreements, however, will have a head start in figuring their finances for both the short term and long term. Prenups allow parties entering into a marriage to formally declare existing assets and liabilities. They also delineate property division in the event of a split.

In Texas, prenups that are created without the advice of a lawyer run the risk of being thrown out in court. Those who want to place themselves on sound financial footing can seek professional guidance regarding the elements of any prenuptial agreement.

Source: WBTV, "Divorce forces some to learn how to handle a budget, debt," Sept. 13, 2012

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Attorney Christine K. Lincoln

Christine K. Lincoln offers sound counsel and legal services to protect clients and their families facing divorce and other family disputes.

She will take the time to understand your individual needs and develop a comprehensive solution to protect your rights and interests.

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