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Protecting you assets without a prenup

Getting married is a joyous eventful time. It is also a time where major decisions are made. Many of these decisions are exciting, such as buying a home, planning a wedding and planning for the future. But when it comes down to the details of the matter, couples can avoid thinking about their personal assets and how they could be impacted by marriage and divorce. While more and more couples use prenuptial and postnuptial agreements to protect assets in case their union ends in divorce, this is a very unromantic and overwhelming conversation to have.

Thus, many forego the prenup because of the problems it has or could pose. But one should note that there are ways to protect your personal assets and property during dissolution without a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement. While drafting a prenup sounds like a couple is just preparing for divorce, this is not really the case for most couples.

Because nearly half of all marriages end in divorce, that is only part of the reason why couples enter into prenups. Including a prenup in a marriage helps spouses gain a full picture of their finances, assets and debts. Even if a prenup is not utilized, it is still important to understand this information prior to and during a marriage.

In order to protect your premarital assets without a prenup, spouses should take five steps. First, they should keep these premarital or separate assets in a separate account. A joint account should be opened for marital assets. Second, spouses should keep their property in separate names. Next, it is important to keep diligent and accurate records of your belongings. Fourth, spouses should keep property appreciation in mind. Finally, spouses should consider drafting a revocable trust. This can keep assets and property separate, ensuring they pass on to the correct people.

Property division is a messy aspect of divorce, which is why many spouses consider going through the process of drafting a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement. Nonetheless, couples are able to provide similar protections to their assets even if they do not include a prenup in their marriage. Thus, it is important to become well informed on these methods and what steps you could take.

Source: Brides.com, "How to Protect Your Assets Without a Prenup," Jaimie Mackey, Oct. 14, 2017

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