Trusted Howard and Montgomery County Divorce Attorneys Create Pre- and Post-Nuptial Agreements
Helping clients in Columbia, Fulton, Bethesda and Rockville plan for their futures
It is a fact of modern life that not every marriage will last until “death do you part.” At McCabe Russell, PA, we work to make the divorce process less arduous and more fair for our clients. One way to make sure that the rights of each married party will be upheld if and when a marriage ends is through either a pre- or post-nuptial agreement: a written document outlining the financial and property disbursements and responsibilities for each person.
Creating one of these agreements may seem like an unromantic gesture at the beginning of a relationship, but really it is an important way to protect both parties in case they ultimately choose divorce. Our Montgomery and Howard County divorce lawyers help clients draft pre- and post-nuptial agreements with the utmost care. We are skillful and experienced family law and divorce attorneys serving families from our offices in Fulton, Columbia, Bethesda and Rockville.
The functions of a pre-nuptial agreement
When a couple gets married, the gesture is more than a symbolic joining. Above and beyond other legal considerations, in the eyes of the law in financial matters both members of the relationship are equally responsible for any debts accrued during the marriages, also called jointly owned debt. Likewise, after a marriage is dissolved, both parties retain ownership of any jointly acquired or titled property. In order to more fairly assign both debt and ownership, a pre-nuptial agreement sets out specific guidelines for what each couple has brought to the marriage and how future earnings and acquisitions will be distributed. For professionals in lucrative careers, creating a plan for asset and resource distribution is a way to plan for fair treatment of all involved.
The pre-nuptial agreement is not simply for people who are anticipating a divorce: they are a useful tool for an uncertain future as well. Some utilities also associated with pre-nuptial agreements are:
- Creating provisions for children from prior relationships, or for former spouses
- Determining inheritance of family property
- Defining a business succession plan
- Outlining trust creation and property distribution
- Dictating the specific responsibilities of each party within the marriage
Vitally, what a pre-nuptial agreement cannot regulate, however, are any elements of child custody or support in the instance of a divorce.
Pre-nuptial vs. post-nuptial agreement
While pre-nuptial agreements are common knowledge, post-nuptial agreements are less well-known but no less important for couples facing a separation or divorce. Pre-nuptials are created prior to the legal marriage, but a post-nuptial can be created at any point after the wedding and can cover much of the same functions as a pre-nuptial agreement. Post-nuptial agreements are often created when there is a reasonable expectation of forthcoming divorce, in order to speed and smooth the divorce proceedings.
Regardless of which option you choose, consultation with an experienced divorce attorney is vital to ensure that the pre- or post-nuptial agreement is within the bounds of the law in Maryland. An agreement that contains illegal or unfair elements can be dismissed entirely by a judge during a divorce case.
Get help drafting a pre- or post-nuptial agreement
The confident and experienced Montgomery and Howard County divorce attorneys at McCabe Russell, PA have the skill and discretion you need to help you draft an appropriate and legal document. If you need trustworthy divorce and family law counsel, we are ready. Please call 443-917-3347 or fill out this contact form to make an appointment at one of our offices in Fulton, Columbia, Bethesda or Rockville.