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Why get a postnuptial agreement?

A prenuptial agreement protects you in case you and your spouse get divorced, and you sign it before the marriage. A postnuptial agreement, or a postnup, does the same thing, but you sign it after the wedding.

Why would you want to draft a postnup? If you did not feel like you needed a prenup before tying the knot, why get one afterwards?

One potential reason is simply that you never considered a prenup, or you at least did not consider it in time to draft one. If you regretted that after marriage, you may want to rectify the situation.

Another reason is infidelity. Some couples do not break up immediately when one person is not faithful in the marriage, but they know that the relationship needs serious work. They also know that it may end in divorce -- something they have perhaps never really considered before. A postnup then feels more necessary than a prenup did.

A third potential reason is if you have children. Perhaps you had a lucrative career, but your spouse convinced you to stop working to take care of the house and the kids. You have enjoyed doing it, but you are taking a financial risk. The postnup can help to ensure that you get the financial assets you need after divorce if the marriage should end by dividing assets in your favor.

These are just three reasons, but they help show why couples choose to sign postnups and how these documents can help. If you would like to use one, make sure you know exactly what legal steps you'll need to take.

Source: ABC News, "Forget the Prenup: Why You May Need a Postnuptial Agreement," A.J. Smith, accessed May 17, 2018

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