When wedding bells are ringing in their ears, some Rhode Island couples may be loathe to enter into a prenuptial agreement, seeing it as unromantic or unnecessary. However, nothing is further from the truth. Prenuptial agreements can not only address the fact that many marriages may end up in divorce, but they can address what to do with a person's assets in the event of one's death. For some couples, planning out finances ahead of time can be a sensible thing to do.
That being said, some couples in Rhode Island who did not enter into a prenup may feel like it is no longer an option for them. That is not the case. Married couples can enter into a postnuptial agreement that addresses many of the same topics as a prenuptial agreement. In fact, a postnuptial agreement can even augment what is written in a prenuptial agreement, if a couple has one.
There are certain requirements that must be met to create a postnuptial agreement. In general, each spouse should be represented by an attorney to protect his or her individual interests. In addition, each spouse must be totally honest and upfront about their finances -- both their assets and their debts. Each state, including Rhode Island may have its own requirements about what formalities the creation of a postnuptial agreement must follow in order to be binding.
Postnuptial agreements can be useful if one spouse's wealth changes significantly. It may also be of use if it is the couple's second marriage, and one or both spouses have grown children from a previous marriage. They may also be useful if one's life circumstances change significantly, perhaps due to a birth, death or job loss.
In the end, it is important that a postnuptial agreement follow state law, so it can protect the financial interests of both parties. A Rhode Island family law attorney may be a good resource of information for couples that want to learn more about postnuptial agreements.
Source: Palm Beach Daily News, "Legal vows: Married couples entering postnuptial agreements," Dian Vujovich, June 27, 2015