This post is the fourth in a multi-part series on marital agreements. If you haven’t read parts 1, 2, and 3 yet, I recommend you do before continuing.

Who are marital agreements best suited for? (continued)

So, who would benefit most from a premarital or postmarital agreement? Let’s take a look at some situations where a marital agreement can help alleviate risk and stress, and even strengthen marriages:

If one or both spouses have substantial assets a prenup might be a good idea. This is the situation most people probably think of when they think of a prenup: a wealthy fiancé or fiancee who wants to protect their assets in the event of divorce. However, this type of stipulation in marital agreements is not only used by the super rich. As we saw in parts 1 and 2, the trend in the US is toward people marrying later in life, meaning that it’s more common for them to have assets they want to protect in the event of divorce.

Marriage licensing signing. Marital agreements

If one or both spouses have substantial debts then a marital agreement may strengthen or even save their marriage. Consider a hypothetical: if you get married and help your spouse pay off their student loans, then get divorced and get nothing in return, is that fair? Debt can be a huge stressor on individuals as well as couples, and arranging for how it will be dealt with can take pressure off of, and sometimes even save marriages.

If you have children from a prior marriage a prenup can allow you to preserve specific property for your children in the event of your death. Without any protection, your spouse may retain rights to the properties.

Check back soon for Prenuptial and postnuptial agreements are on the rise – here’s what you need to know, Part 5. In the meantime, check out our page on premarital and postmarital agreements.