Irrespective of how marriage comes to an end, breaking down a relationship can be a difficult experience. On top of the emotional turmoil, the separating couples face significant financial issues that should be handled with utmost sobriety. Fortunately, you can always protect your assets, such as your home, car or money, prior to getting married.
Although preparing for your wedding is exciting, it is crucial to plan for your future as a married couple. It would be best if you consider following critical steps to help protect your assets in the event of separation. Read on to find out how to protect your financial assets before and after marriage.
1. Sign A Prenuptial Or Postnuptial Agreement
The signing of prenuptial and postnuptial agreements is the first line of defense to safeguard your assets before and after marriage. The prenuptial agreement is signed before your marriage and will determine how you’ll intend to treat your assets during your marriage and in case of a divorce.
In the prenuptial contract, you’ll include your financial assets and other vital matters, such as communication with your kids after separation and lifestyle requirements. An essential thing in this agreement is to determine your status of savings and assets and the distribution of your income from your business.
But if you’re already married to your partner and are interested in protecting your financial assets afterwards, you should consider signing a postnuptial agreement. Agreeing to this agreement doesn’t mean one of the parties is looking forward to a divorce. Usually, there are various reasons that would lead one to sign a postnuptial agreement to protect their asset.
For instance, biological children from a previous marriage or relationship might want to ensure their kids’ inheritances are well-protected in the event of divorce. Inheritance, increase in salary, legal troubles, and lottery wins, among other life occurrences, can make one sign a postnuptial agreement against the uncertainty of the future.
2. Separate Your Finances
If you had funds or an account before marriage, you should consider separating it from your partner’s. When you combine your account or funds, they cease being an individual asset and become marital property. As a result, it becomes susceptible to division by creditors or court in case of divorce. You might consider opening a joint account after marriage and depositing shared funds that you can access in case of any financial needs. By doing this, you’ll be able to secure your financial assets in your existing personal account.
3. Prepare The Future Of Your Marriage Together
Before starting a new life with your partner, assessing what you and your better half are bringing to your marriage is vital. You should evaluate your finances, including assets and debts. In case your partner is in debt, combining your assets together will grant your partner’s creditor access to your asset.
Therefore, the first step to protecting financial assets before marriage is to appraise both parties’ financial assets. Although doing this can be very personal, it will be beneficial as you handle and maintain your assets, whether your marriage is successful or not.
Additionally, you might want to consider keeping your assets in a revocable trust. By doing so, you’ll have added protection to your assets, allowing you to manage funds during your marriage. A revocable trust is a type of trust that involves a third party and a trustee who is responsible for managing your funds during your marriage. Putting your pre-marital assets into a revocable trust will also eliminate the risk of commingling funds in case of a possible divorce. This makes it relatively easy to protect your assets during and after marriage.
4. Document Everything
The best and most effective way of protecting your financial asset without needing a prenup is through documentation. Keeping and organizing all essential records from the start of your marriage will be important down the road as you need access to, for example, your retirement funds and other bank accounts that were opened before your marriage.
If you or your partner owns a business, it’s essential to have it evaluated prior to your marriage. Document and keep safe all the records on the value of your business. By documenting your assets, you’ll protect the current value of your business against threats. The more recorded details you have on which properties are non-marital ones, the better your chances of securing and protecting all your financial assets.
If you own valuable assets, you should consider protecting them before marriage, or your divorce filing will become more challenging. Protecting your assets before and after marriage is vital, and you can achieve that by adhering to the tips discussed in this article. As you plan for your wedding, consider organizing your finances and ensure you’re set in the event of a divorce.