In the past, many people in Illinois considered prenuptial agreements to be limited to those with generational family wealth or major celebrities. However, a growing number of people have chosen to negotiate a prenup before they marry, especially as more people choose to wed later in life or after developing a burgeoning career. More people bring property and children of their own to their marriages and may want the additional preparation and planning that a prenup provides. Some of the issues addressed by a prenuptial agreement may also arise after a couple has already married, however.
There are options to negotiate the financial aspects of a potential future separation even for people who are already married. Even more than prenups, postnuptial agreements may simply feel like divorce negotiations in advance or a sign of a troubled marriage. However, there are very practical reasons why some couples may want to consider a postnup. One partner may be in line to receive a substantial inheritance or family heirloom. While they want to share the benefits of their inheritance with their partner, their family may want to ensure that the assets remain protected in case of a divorce or separation.
Another instance in which a postnup may be important is when one of the spouses has founded a business, particularly if they are pursuing outside investment. Closely held private businesses have been torn apart or forced into sale due to property division in a divorce. Many investors want to see a prenup or postnup on record that officially protects the company from divorce proceedings.
There are a number of reasons why a postnuptial agreement could help people with their financial planning, even if they do not intend to divorce. A family law attorney may provide guidance and help a spouse to negotiate a fair postnup.