David G. Moore Attorney At Law
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Why young couples should consider a prenuptial agreement

Prenuptial agreements aren't something that many young couples in Michigan consider when getting married. Young people who haven't accumulated many assets assume that they have no reason to get one. However, just because assets are scarce now doesn't mean they will always be.

If there's a business in someone's family, they may not own it now, but it is possible that they will in the future. A family business can be considered part of marital property if one spouse argues that they helped increase the value of the business. Anything that that spouse did to help the business, be it actually working in the business itself or taking care of chores at home to allow the other spouse to spend time working on the business, can be used as an argument to make the business part of the marital property.

Inheritance is generally not considered part of marital property. However, when property that is used and owned by both spouses is purchased with the money, a house or vehicles for example, then it becomes part of both spouses' property. This is called comingling, and a prenup can be written up to ensure that the inheritance money is not considered a joint asset.

Like inheritance, debt that is accumulated before a marriage generally is not part of marital property. However, over the years this can become unclear with debt consolidation and refinancing. This can be important during the marriage as well. The spouse who didn't accumulate the debt may not want to be held responsible for it if the other spouse isn't able to pay.

Prenuptial agreements aren't the most romantic thing, and many young people don't want to think about the possibility of divorce while planning their marriage. However, having a prenup can help save a lot of trouble in the future. Marital property law can be complex, and it may be helpful for each to contact an attorney to help them create a prenuptial agreement.

Source: MainStreet, "Why You Need a Prenup to Marry Even If You Think You’re Poor", Marc Levy, October 06, 2014

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