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PRENUPTIAL AND POSTNUPTIAL AGREEMENTS: WHY AND HOW?

Posted by Michelle Dellino | Jan 28, 2016 | 0 Comments

Prenup agreements image

The beginning of a new year brings all different flavors of change, in relationships and otherwise. Nicknamed ”, January sees an outpouring of couples looking to end their relationships. At the same time, there is a surge of couples beginning the year hopeful and ready to move to the next stage with their partner.

Couples got engaged over the holidays or in the fall, or proposals are forthcoming. Wedding season is on the horizon. Approaching marriage, it is important to consider whether you are going to execute a prenuptial agreement.

*Why get a prenuptial agreement?

There is a fair amount of social stigma attached to prenuptial agreements: Aren't you expecting your marriage to last forever? Why are you preparing for divorce? Does a prenup doom your marriage from the start?

When saying “I do”, most all couples hope for “happily ever after”. The truth is, however, more than half of American marriages end in divorce, despite everyone's best intentions.

As much as a marriage is a public declaration of love and commitment, it is a financial partnership, endorsed by the government and involving certain rights and responsibilities. Prenuptial agreements are becoming increasingly popular. This is not because people are assuming their marriage will end in divorce, but because they are choosing to be prepared for all outcomes and protecting themselves and their separate property.

Making the decision to end a marriage is generally an emotional and painful process, unique to each individual couple. For couples who determine it is in their best interest to divorce, having a prenuptial agreement in place eases the process somewhat, with decisions about some of the important logistics involved in the separation process having already been made.

Washington is a community property state. Pre- and postnuptial agreements allow for clarity when it comes to property and asset ownership during a marriage and in the event of a divorce or legal separation. Spousal maintenance (also known as alimony or spousal support) and life insurance may also be included in these contracts. Washington state pre- and postnuptial agreements do not address child custody or child support issues.

*Definitions:

*Legal Representation:

Prenuptial and postnuptial agreements can be complex and must meet certain criteria in order to be enforceable. Each party much have an independent attorney's advice and counsel before the agreement is signed. It is essential to work with a knowledgeable and experienced  through this process. Our are well-versed in the sensitive nature of this topic area. We are prepared to help you navigate the process, offer sound legal advice and counsel, and draft your contract as appropriate. We are experienced in executing very complex and also more simple pre- and postnuptial agreements, depending on your unique situation. We will advocate for you and help protect your assets in the event divorce becomes a reality.

Please contact our  today for a .

About the Author

Michelle Dellino

Michelle Dellino is the Managing Attorney of Dellino Law Group. The firm was founded on her belief that there is, very simply, a solution to every problem. Her personal practice focuses on complex family law matters including high conflict cases; high asset and long term marriage dissolution; cases involving business owners, IT, and medical professionals; domestic violence family law; and preparing cohabitation, prenuptial, and postnuptial agreements. Both a trained mediator and former criminal trial attorney, she has the skills and experience to take a case anywhere it needs to go, whether that is a creative settlement or intensive courtroom litigation. In her free time she chases her four dogs and two cats, loves the New York Yankees because mediocrity is not tolerated in pinstripes, and travels as often as she can.

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