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Should you get a postnuptial agreement?

Most attorneys recommend that couples draw up a prenuptial agreement before they get married. Even if they don't have significant resources or debts going into the marriage, a prenup can detail how marital assets will be divided in case of a break-up.

If you don't have a prenup, you can draw up a postnuptial agreement at any time after the marriage. Like a prenup, a postnup can designate how property and other assets will be divided in case of a divorce.

Postnups are more likely to contain stipulations about spousal and child support than prenups. Some people also include language regarding what additional assets or support a spouse may have to part with if he or she is unfaithful during the marriage.

Many couples decide to get a postnup if the fortunes of one spouse change significantly, making him or her by far the wealthier. Sometimes, one spouse seeks a postnup upon starting a business in order to protect it.

If one spouse decides to take time out of the workforce to raise children, he or she may seek a postnup as financial protection if the marriage ends. In other cases, couples realize that they have very different attitudes toward money, and one spouse wants to protect his or her assets.

Some couples draw up a postnup if their marriage is troubled. However, it's best to draw up this agreement while your marriage is still healthy.

It's best that both spouses have their own attorneys when getting a postnup, just as with a prenup, to ensure that their interests are protected. A Massachusetts family law attorney can provide guidance to help you protect your assets and financial security in case of a divorce.

Source: ABC News, "Forget the Prenup: Why You May Need a Postnuptial Agreement," AJ Smith, Credit.com, accessed Nov. 22, 2016

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