When couples get engaged, a prenuptial agreement may be the last thing they want to consider. However, this document can protect both spouses if they divorce. People should understand what they can and cannot include when they draft this agreement.
A prenuptial agreement outlines guidelines a couple has to follow at the end of their marriage. According to FindLaw, the prenuptial covers large assets, such as finances and real estate. However, this document does not make provisions for every post-divorce arrangement.
Exclusions from a prenup
Many people may want to use their prenup to determine who will have custody of their children and who will pay child support. However, people cannot make these decisions in a prenup. This is because Connecticut courts award child custody by considering what is best for the children. The parent who receives child support may be the primary caregiver or the parent with a lower income. The child custody and support order has to reflect the current situation, not the one people had at the beginning of the marriage.
Additionally, people cannot use the prenuptial agreement to determine domestic arrangements, such as how often they will visit relatives or how they will divide chores. A prenup should usually only address a couple’s assets. If people choose to include personal details, a court may view the document as invalid.
A good prenup outlines which spouse owns certain financial and tangible assets. According to Brides.com, people should include all their debts in the prenuptial agreement. This helps establish that people are only responsible for paying the debts they brought into the marriage. Without this clause, people may find themselves liable for their ex-spouse’s debt.
Additionally, people can use this document to specify which assets are separate property. One spouse, for example, may give the other spouse jewelry or artwork as gifts. The prenup can specify that these gifts are the property of the recipient.