Prenuptial agreements' other uses: Defining assets after death

On behalf of Scaringi Law posted in Estate Planning on Thursday, February 18, 2016.

Can a prenuptial agreement be helpful in estate planning? They can be, and they just may save you some trouble down the line. In many ways, a prenuptial agreement can be used like a will, helping you define your wants without necessarily needing to have separate paperwork at the moment.

According to a report from Feb. 9, prenuptial agreements can be helpful in the event of the death of a spouse while the couple is still married. While prenuptial agreements are generally seen as a way to protect assets in case of a divorce, these agreements can also be a sort of guarantee that a spouse will receive certain assets following the death of a partner.

Because people are getting married later in life, it's much more common for them to have greater assets. While this can be great for a married couple, it can cause serious problems if no plan is in place following a person's death.

Without a plan in place, the assets that have been collected could be divided up between those who are entitled to an elective share. Is that really fair to a person's spouse? That's the consideration that makes people want to put a plan in place in their prenuptial agreements.

For families that are blended, the prenuptial agreement can give the man or woman a place to provide information on how a spouse will be supported after his or her partner passes, but it can also be used to determine which share of the person's assets are subject to distribution within the estate in Pennsylvania.

Source: The Legal Intelligencer, "The Benefits of Prenuptial Agreements in Estate Planning," Jennifer Kosteva and Scott J.G. Finger, Feb. 09, 2016

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