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Postnuptial agreements continue to gain popularity

Some couples who did not enter into a prenuptial agreement before marriage are taking a look at creating the postnuptial variety. Interest has begun to build even for couples who have been together for decades. While it is a relatively new area of law, the postnuptial agreement may be as important in helping to save a marriage as it is in speaking to the division of assets in case of divorce.

When to draw up your postnup

A postnuptial agreement, or postnup, can be created at any time during the marriage, from the day after you marry or thirty years into the future. Keep in mind that there are usually more restrictions in a postnup than there are in a prenuptial agreement.

Once you marry, you are building a history together as well as property. Texas is a community property state. Assets accumulated during the marriage are considered marital property in most circumstances. Drawing a postnuptial agreement will give you more power to dictate how marital assets are divided.

A postnup may be helpful in other circumstances as well. If your marriage is undergoing a certain amount of strain, and you both believe that you are growing apart, the postnup might help to smooth the bumps in the road.

Simplifying married life

A postnuptial agreement is not just about the division of assets. You may not want a divorce, you just want to stop squabbling about who takes care of what chores on a daily basis. You can actually prepare an agreement that establishes who is in charge of taking care of the dog, including daily walks, playtime and trips to the vet, and who is in charge of collecting trash around the house and taking the trashcan out to the curb. For some couples, sticking points are more serious. One person may have a drinking or gambling problem and the marriage is shaky, but neither party wants to end it. Postnups have been known to help people see problems more clearly and resolve them more reasonably.

A developing process

Although there are postnuptial agreement variations from state to state, both case and statutory laws are in the process of development in terms of the validity and enforceability of these agreements. Enforceability would speak to full financial disclosure and proof that any negotiation process involved is not coercive. The bottom line is that any couple interested in creating a postnup should contact an attorney experienced in family law matters who can answer questions about state laws and help to craft an agreement that can be approved by both parties.

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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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