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Considering a postnuptial agreement for stay at home parents

Couples in Texas may often think about their future as a family but one thing that might not be discussed is a couple's future possibility of divorce, although in this day and age it is not uncommon to prepare for such an event. In addition, marital finances, property division and alimony can be messy topics to discuss during a divorce. Documents such as a prenuptial agreement and a postnuptial agreement can address these issues without a dispute fogging the views of the splitting spouses

A postnuptial agreement could serve as a safeguard for various reasons. One common scenario is when one spouse decides to quit his or her job to become a stay at home parent. The prenuptial or postnuptial agreement will help ensure financial stability if the couple divorces and will also fill in any gaps with their future income potential if and when such spouse returns to the workforce.

In these situations, it is important to consider divorce as a possibility even if that is the last thing the couple wants to think about as they make marital decisions. But the reality of the situation is that it is a major life-changing decision for a spouse to give up a job to be a stay at home parent and such a decision requires a safety net.

When a spouse is completely financially dependent on the other spouse, this can change the dynamics of the relationship and could lead to financial issues. Disputes about spending, saving and investing can lead to arguments, which in the end could lead to marital problems. An instrument such as a postnuptial agreement could protect the financial interests and support of the couple, especially if their relationship drastically changes due to a spouse becoming a stay at home parent.

Postnuptial agreements are drafted after the marriage and may be signed before one spouse quits a job or make other big life changes. The document can spell out various scenarios and ensure financial security for each spouse if a divorce occurs, especially if the spouse may need spousal support or alimony.

Those seeking to draft or enforce a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement should make sure that they fully understand the document. A professional could help with the drafting process so that it is properly execute and enforceable.

Source: Forbes, "Why You Need A Postnup And Other Points To Consider Before Leaving Your Paid Job To Be A Stay-At-Home Mom," Jeff Landers, Jan. 22, 2014

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