A prenuptial agreement or “prenup,” is a contract entered prior to marriage that divides the couple's assets in case of divorce. Many people associate prenuptial agreements with those who are very wealthy, but anyone who wants to protect his or her pre-marital property in the event of divorce should consider a prenup. If a couple enters into a prenuptial agreement, it is very likely that upon divorce, the courts will approve the agreement and incorporate it into the final divorce decree. It is best to talk about and agree to the terms of your prenup with your future spouse at least 6-12 months before your wedding.
If you have substantial liquid assets, consider keeping what you already have prior to the marriage in a separate account with only your name on it. This will make these assets easier to identify in the event of divorce. Additionally, keeping
these assets separate will ensure no co-mingling of assets takes place. Postnuptial agreements are similar to prenuptial in that they are legal agreements entered into by both spouses during the marriage that list out how assets or debts will be divided in the case of divorce or death. Essentially, these agreements are prenuptial agreements that are signed during the marriage, not before. A couple may want to seek a postnup for all of the same reasons that a couple would seek a prenup.