Prenup Lawyer Chicago, IL
When you and your soon-to-be-spouse are getting married in Illinois, you may wish to work with a prenup lawyer Chicago, IL relies on from Hurst, Robin & Kay, LLC. Although many people believe that prenuptial agreements are meant to be used by rich people, these types of agreements can actually be very useful when it comes to benefiting both spouses and drawing a line between assets before marriage. Not every couple will need a prenup agreement, but many can benefit from one. If you would like to see if a prenup agreement is right for you and you would like to speak with an attorney from our team, give our office a call now.
What does a prenup agreement do?
When you create a prenuptial agreement, you and your partner are signing a legal contract that can guide you through certain situations when you are married and in the event of a divorce or the death of one of the spouses. For example, if you were married before and have shared assets or would like to focus on protecting your finances and are worried that this could become a problem in the event of a divorce, a prenuptial agreement is right for you.
What do I need for a prenuptial agreement in the state of Illinois?
Our Chicago, Illinois prenup lawyer can help guide you through the process of creating a prenup. This will involve creating a document in writing that you and your partner both sign. Although you can create this document before you are married, it only goes into effect once you and your partner get married. You and your partner must also discuss things like property, assets, and income. If you do not wish to do this, your partner must waive this right in writing.
Is it possible to make changes to a prenup agreement?
Absolutely. You and your spouse will need to make the changes or completely revoke the prenuptial agreement and sign it.
What You Should Know About Getting a Prenup in Illinois
When you and your partner are hoping to get a prenup, you may think it would be fairly simple to go on a website, print out a document, and sign it. While you may be able to do this, working with an attorney on your prenup is the way to go. An online form will not be tailored specifically to you and your partner and this can leave gaps when you are hoping to create a detailed prenup. Instead, when you work with our attorney, you know you are getting someone who will create a custom prenup document that is tailored to you and your partner.
Are prenups and postnups the same thing?
These documents are very similar but the main difference is that a prenup is written and signed by the couple before they enter into marriage. A postnuptial agreement is an agreement that each partner signs after they have entered into marriage.
My partner and I would like to use the same lawyer. Can we do this?
We strongly advise against trying to use the same attorney when creating and signing a prenup agreement. One of the most important parts of an attorney’s job is ensuring they are protecting their clients’ best interests. An attorney who is representing both halves of a married couple would have a conflict of interest and would not be able to properly represent both sides. Instead, each party should have their own attorney so that they can get the legal advice they need when signing a prenup.
Are there situations where a prenup cannot be upheld?
Yes. If one partner was forced into signing the prenup or the prenup is extremely unfair to one partner and favorable to the other then it may not be enforceable. That said, when you have an attorney on your side throughout the process, it should make this much less complicated.
There are certain circumstances that you may be able to prove if you believe that your prenup agreement should be unenforceable. When you want to challenge your agreement it is best to work with a Chicago prenup lawyer to ensure you have the legal basis you need. You may be able to prove that a prenup will not hold up if you can show:
- You were coerced into signing the prenup or forced to do so against your will
- You signed the prenup agreement but were not informed of financial obligations your partner had or property they were holding.
Is it possible to make changes to certain parts of a prenup agreement after each partner signed it?
Yes, there are certain circumstances under which a court may choose not to uphold part of a prenup agreement. For example, each partner may have agreed to a certain amount of money for spousal support. However, if one of the people in this relationship was in an accident and required more than initially stated for spousal support, a court may choose to enforce a higher amount of spousal support to help make up for what the injured person is not able to pay for.
Should You Consider a Postnuptial Agreement?
A postnuptial agreement, like a prenuptial agreement, is a legal contract that sets forth how marital property should be divided if the couple divorces. The only difference is that a prenuptial agreement is executed before marriage, and a postnuptial agreement is executed after the parties are already married. If a couple did not sign a prenup before they got married, a prenup lawyer in Chicago, IL can help draft up a postnuptial agreement that will work the same way should the couple decide to end their marriage.
Illinois is an equitable property state, which means that marital property is divided in “just proportions,” and not necessarily split 50/50. Courts consider a myriad of factors when determining how to divide marital property, which means neither party goes into a divorce feeling secure in their economic status. That’s why many couples execute prenuptial and postnuptial agreements – so they can feel secure about their economic futures.
Both prenuptial and postnuptial agreements also simplify divorces and save the parties money and time – and the parties can avoid the emotional toll of going through litigation.
Under What Circumstances Would You Execute a Postnuptial Agreement?
There are several instances in which you might consider executing a postnuptial agreement, like if you thought about negotiating a prenuptial agreement but ran out of time before the wedding. Rest assured that you can still negotiate reasonable terms after the fact. A Chicago, IL prenup lawyer can help.
Here are other examples of when you might want a postnuptial agreement:
- One spouse decides to open a new business and doesn’t want to worry about dividing these assets in the event of a divorce. The couple can execute a postnuptial agreement that ensures all of these business assets fall to the business owner if the marriage ends.
- One spouse receives a large inheritance from a family member. A family inheritance can be sentimental, and the inheritor might not want those assets going to his or her spouse in a divorce. A postnuptial agreement is a way to ensure that those assets belong solely to the inheritor post-marriage.
- One or both spouses is considering divorce. You can determine how to divide the marital property before filing for divorce.
However, a postnuptial agreement doesn’t have to be a document that solely contemplates divorce. Executing a postnup is also a way for the couple to analyze their financial assets and codify each partner’s obligations. For example, the couple might examine how they spend and save money and whether one partner feels that these habits are inequitable. A postnup, like a prenup, could make both partners feel more economically comfortable.
The Downsides of Executing a Postnuptial Agreement
It is important to remember that a postnuptial (and a prenuptial) agreement is a binding legal contract. You cannot easily back out of it once the document has been signed. That’s why an experienced Chicago, IL prenup lawyer should always review the agreement to make sure the terms are not unfair to you.
Even though a postnuptial agreement is designed to avoid litigation, one or both parties may challenge its validity in court. If the agreement is not drafted or executed according to Illinois contract law then it may be found void during a divorce proceeding.
Are you interested in seeing what an attorney can do for you during the prenup process? Give Hurst, Robin & Kay, LLC a call to speak with our prenup lawyer in Chicago, IL today.