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Preparing for a Prenuptial Agreement

If you are planning to get married, you should be preparing for a prenuptial agreement prior to the date of your marriage. While there are many misconceptions about prenuptial agreements—known as premarital agreements under Illinois law—it is important to understand that prenuptial agreements can be beneficial for almost everyone who is getting married. Regardless of the assets you are bringing to the marriage or your earning potential, a prenuptial agreement can be essential for outlining financial issues and expectations during the marriage and for making clear plans in the event of a divorce. 

Prenuptial agreements in Illinois are governed by the Illinois Uniform Premarital Agreement Act, and it is important to create a checklist for yourself as you go into the process of drafting and signing a prenup in Illinois. The following are some of the issues you should consider as you prepare to enter into a premarital agreement.

Expenses and Finances During the Marriage

How will you and your spouse share expenses during the marriage, and how will you manage financial arrangements? For example, will one of the spouses be responsible for living expenses and bills, and how will costs be shared? How will the parties handle medical insurance costs and unexpected healthcare bills? Will the parties share accounts, and if so, who will be responsible for managing them? You can detail all of this information in your premarital agreement. 

Taxes During the Marriage

Will the parties file taxes jointly or separately during the marriage, and how will tax filing affect exemptions, exclusions, or deductions?

Classification of Assets and Debts Acquired Prior to the Date of Marriage But After Cohabitation

Many people who get married are living together prior to the date of the marriage. While assets and debts acquired during this time will typically be treated as separate property (and will not be divisible in a divorce) if the court classifies the property, the parties can clarify how these assets and debts should be classified. In some circumstances, when the parties have cohabited for years or decades prior to marriage, they might agree to classify certain assets and debts from before the marriage as marital property or property that will be divided in the event of divorce.

Assets or Debts to be Excluded from Property Division in the Event of Divorce

Premarital agreements can specify whether certain assets or debts acquired during the marriage can be excluded from property division in the event of a divorce.

Spousal Maintenance in the Event of Divorce

You can decide in a prenuptial agreement how much spousal support will be paid to one of the spouses in the event of divorce, or whether the spouses will waive the right to support.

Contact Our Illinois Premarital Agreement Lawyers

When you are entering into a premarital agreement in Illinois, it is critical to have an experienced Illinois prenuptial agreement lawyer on your side. Not only can an experienced attorney make sure that the agreement is fair to you and that the terms look to be enforceable in the event of a divorce, but it is often necessary for both parties to be represented by an attorney in order to reduce the chance that the court will find evidence of unconscionability or duress when it comes to enforcing the agreement in the future. Contact Arami Law, Inc. to learn more about how we can assist with your prenuptial agreement.

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