Should I Sign a Prenuptial Agreement?

In Georgia, there is currently no Uniform Prenuptial Agreement Act, a congressional act that standardizes how courts will view and accept the terms of a premarital contract. Georgia law still permits couples who are getting married, however, to enter into a prenuptial agreement, which almost any couple can utilize. Even if the parties do not have substantial assets or debts going into the marriage, it is often impossible to know at the start of a marriage how the couple will accumulate assets and debts during the marriage, and the prenuptial agreement can help to clarify how those assets and debts might be divided later on.

For certain parties, entering into a prenuptial agreement is not only an effective way to plan for the future, but it can be essential to secure assets. Signing a specific prenuptial agreement, however, may not be the right choice for every person. If you have questions about whether to sign a prenuptial agreement, you should always seek advice from a Georgia family law attorney. The following is a list of benefits and drawbacks to signing a prenuptial agreement that you can use to evaluate if it is right for you.

Benefits of a Georgia Prenuptial Agreement

There are numerous benefits to prenuptial agreements, often called “prenups” or premarital agreements, regardless of your current financial situation. Some of the benefits to a prenup include but are not limited to the following:

  • You can protect your separate property (by ensuring that it is kept separate) upon marriage, thereby clarifying that it will not be divisible in the event of divorce;
  • Specifically identify property that is “separate property” (and not divisible in the event of divorce) and that is “marital property” (and is divisible in the event of divorce);
  • Reduce the likelihood of a contentious divorce by making plans for marital assets and debts;
  • Come to an agreement concerning other financial issues that may arise within the marriage; and
  • Determine a system through which future financial or marital issues will be decided by the parties.

It is important to clarify that Georgia law does not permit couples to enter into a marriage contract concerning child custody or child support—these issues are outside the bounds of a prenuptial agreement. Generally speaking, however, Georgia courts typically will uphold the terms of a prenuptial agreement unless the couple failed to enter into the contract in writing, or there were questions about fraud, duress, or unconscionability at the time the contract was signed.

Disadvantages of a Prenuptial Agreement

Some of the cons, or disadvantages, of a prenuptial agreement that we hear most often tend to include the following:

  • Relationship is not at the point where a prenuptial agreement, and its terms, would be appropriate for the couple to contemplate; and
  • Signing a prenuptial agreement feels like it takes the romance out of marriage planning.

In most cases, as long as the terms of a prenuptial agreement are fair to both parties, they tend to be important tools for financial planning.

Should I Sign a Prenuptial Agreement in Georgia?

You should not sign a prenuptial agreement until you have reviewed it with an experienced Georgia family law attorney. A dedicated advocate at Mitchell & Crunk can review the terms of your contract today and, if necessary, suggest revisions to the prenuptial agreement before you sign it. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help with your prenuptial agreement.