"Litigating family law matters is never easy on the parties involved. Here at DPG Family Law, we understand that any type of family law litigation is by its very nature stressful and involves unfamiliar terrain. It is our mission to provide our clients with unparalleled legal representation and counsel, and to ensure a swift resolution of any legal proceedings with your best interests in mind." David Gonet, attorney
OUR BLOG OF DIVORCE AND FAMILY LAW ISSUES IN ILLINOIS
How To Get A Prenuptial Agreement In Illinois; And 10 Things To Consider Before A Prenuptial Agreement.
Illinois Prenuptial and Postnuptial agreement have become very popular in the last couple of years. They are no longer simply for the wealthy. A well written prenuptial agreement can save you thousands of dollars and headaches down the road in case of a divorce. What exactly is a prenuptial agreement? How do you get a prenuptial agreement? What needs to be written in the agreement? These are common questions our clients ask when they visit our Lincolnshire of Hoffman Estates offices and meet with one of your divorce attorneys.
Here are the most common 10 items that need to be addressed when it comes to Illinois prenuptial agreements.
1. Hire a competent attorney who is experienced in Illinois laws regarding executing drafting Prenuptial Agreements. Illinois has adopted the Uniform Premarital Agreement Act. All premarital agreements must be executed and drafted in accordance with the Act. There is a lot of misinformation regarding prenuptial agreements. Do not really on friends or family. You do not want to be going through a divorce in Illinois and only then find out that your prenuptial agreement is invalid.
2. Fully disclose your assets and liabilities. Gather up your most recent financial records for your stocks, bonds, annuity funds, bank statements, retirement accounts, the appraisal for your home, car, boat and any other costly assets, a couple of years of your tax returns and recent pay stubs. You will need to exchange this asset information with your soon-to-be spouse. In addition, you will have to create a list of your assets on a “Schedule” to attach to the Prenuptial Agreement. It will be helpful to gather such information to create a current and accurate Schedule.
3. Compile these above documents into either printed form or electronic form. Once compiled, provide you attorney wit the documents. He or she will attach a list of all your debts and assets to the prenuptial agreement. Full disclosure of assets and debts is very important. Many prenuptial agreements are invalidated in Illinois because there was no full disclosure.
4. You will need to decide if you want the Prenuptial Agreement to apply to in event of a divorce, separate support and inheritance-related matters. You will need to figure out what is Separate Property which each of you have owned before your marriage and will remain Separate Property and which will be Marital Property. Discuss options with your attorney. You can even write into the agreement that certain property you acquire during the marriage will remain non-marital. An experienced Illinois divorce lawyer can advise you as to how to protect your assets and prevent them from being transmuted into marital property during the marriage.
5. Depending on your financial circumstances and if you are seeking your fiancé to waive assets or income in the Prenuptial Agreement, consider options such as paying some money (alimony or maintenance) or assets to your fiancé after periods of time that you are married, if you have considerably more assets and income than him or her. Alternatively, if your financial needs are greater than your fiancé, consider seeking some money or assets from your soon to be spouse after being married for a period of time, if the waiver of assets or income is sought. Another option would be to have the Prenuptial Agreement terminate after a certain amount of years , which is having a sunset clause.
6. Think about if you want to waive alimony. Sometimes, it may not be a good idea to waive alimony as you don’t know what will happen in the future. Your needs may change, such as if you will have children and one of you will stay home with the children, if you become unemployed with no job prospects or if you become unable to work.
7. Illinois law does not allow you to waive paying child support for children in a Prenuptial Agreement as it is against public policy due to the fact that minor children need financial support and it would be against public policy to allow a parent to waive their obligation to support minor children after a divorce.
8. Keep in mind that certain inheritances you may receive during the marriage may be considered marital. Inform your divorce attorney who is preparing your prenuptial agreement, if you are expecting any inheritances. That way, your divorce attorney can protect those assets when they are attributed to you.
9. Make sure that you and your fiancé fully understand the prenuptial agreement before signing. It is quite common for Illinois judges to invalidate prenuptial agreements at the time of divorce, if they believe one the parties did not fully understand the agreement. It may be a good idea for you to even hire a divorce attorney for your fiancé who will explain the prenuptial agreement to him/her.
10. It is never a good idea to enter into a prenuptial agreement right before the wedding. In Illinois, judges will invalidate a prenuptial agreement if it has been signed right before a wedding date. The theory is that one of the parties was pressured into signing this document and did not fully understand the document. It is always a good idea to hire a divorce attorney to prepare a prenuptial agreement for you at least 2 months before the anticipated wedding date.
DPG Family law specialized in preparing prenuptial agreements for clients in the Chicagoland area. Please visit or call our offices in Lincolnshire, Illinois of Hoffman Estates, Illinois to schedule a free consultation with a divorce attorney.
Additional law offices in Deer Park, Illinois
and West Loop (downtown) Chicago.
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