Rhode Island couples planning a wedding may be more consumed with the details of their big day, rather than the financial aspects of their marriage and the possibility of divorce. However, soon-to-be-wed couples -- especially those who are bringing a significant amount of assets into the marriage -- may want to sit down and discuss whether entering into a prenuptial agreement is right for them.
If a spouse enters the marriage with a significant amount of assets, their own business or if a spouse expects to receive a substantial inheritance while married, it may behoove that spouse to look into entering into a prenuptial agreement prior to the marriage. Although the laws vary depending on what state you live in, the appreciation in value of certain types of property during the course of the marriage may be counted as marital property. In fact, some states do not recognize separate property at all. It is important to understand the laws of separate property and marital property in your state, so you can protect your interests.
If a couple in Rhode Island does decide to enter into a prenuptial agreement, they should each retain legal counsel, and discuss with this person what their goals are. This way the prenuptial agreement can be fashioned in a way that meets these goals. While prenuptial agreements may not be romantic, they can be a realistic way for individuals to protect themselves financially in the event of a divorce. Individuals may need to be able to show what they owned prior to getting married and they may need to show that their separate property was not commingled with marital property during the course of the marriage. Similarly, couples should make sure that they understand what will happen to separate property if that property is put under the name of both spouses.
With so many Rhode Island spouses getting divorced these days, couples preparing to walk down the aisle may want to protect their interests and enter into a prenuptial agreement. At the very least, discussing their interests with a Rhode Island family law attorney can help individuals in Rhode Island learn more about prenuptial agreements and property division laws in the state.
Source: The Huffington Post, "The Happily Married Spouse's Guide to Divorce: Ten Tips for the Blissful but Prudent," Stephen P. McSweeney and Tara Jones Willecke, Nov. 13, 2015