What is this for?
This Prenup Encyclopedia is designed to gear you and your partner up before you dive into your prenuptial agreement.
Advice – the legal kind
Obtaining legal information regarding your prenuptial agreement from an attorney. HelloPrenup is not a law firm, and cannot provide you with legal advice or representation. If you are looking for legal advice or advice on your specific situation, you should contact a licensed attorney.
In the context of inheritance or trusts, a benefactor is an individual that provides money or resources to an individual. A beneficiary is a person who is named to receive property from an estate.
A beneficiary is any person who gains an advantage and/or financial profit from something. In the context of inheritance, a beneficiary typically refers to someone eligible to receive distributions from a trust or will. You may be the beneficiary in a trust or will, or for a life insurance policy.
Contributions from either Fiancé
Dissolution of marriage
Draft prenuptial agreement
Earned income included in your prenuptial agreement financial schedule
Money that comes from your employment. Earned income can include taxable employee compensation and earnings from self-employment, and in certain cases, disability payments. Read more here: IRS Definition of earned income
Some states require “full disclosure” of finances, and others require “full and fair financial disclosure” of finances. Regardless, if you want the greatest chance of enforcement, it is important that you disclose all of your finances. So, where do you put this information? Each fiancé will have a “Schedule A” or “Schedule B” financial schedule, that will include this information.
Full financial disclosure is imperative for a variety of reasons. If you fail to disclose all of your assets, your prenup may be found invalid in the case of a divorce. This means you and your spouse may have to take part in litigation to resolve the matters that should have been resolved in your prenup.
Want an example of what may happen should you choose NOT to disclose all of your finances? In one Massachusetts case, the appeals court invalidated a prenuptial agreement after finding a lack of full disclosure by one of the spouses (Schechter v. Schechter, 88 Mass. App. Ct. 239 (2015). In this case, the husband did not disclose his financial assets. He also falsely claimed that his primary asset, his real estate company, was a partnership when it was not.
An invention or working project that stems from creativity – can be protected with a patent, copyright, or trademarkable rights.
Investments – to be included in your prenup financial schedule
Law of Competent Jurisdiction
Lump sum payments
Lump sum payments are optional to add to your prenup, and may level the playing field for couples who have great wealth disparities. They are separate from alimony or spousal support, which is dictated by and calculated according to state statute. Some couples consider including lump sum payment terms in their prenuptial agreement in the instance where one party plans to give up their job to care for children, and may have a reduced earning capacity as a result.
A marriage license is a document typically issued by the country clerk that recognizes a couple’s legal ability to get married in the county and state in which it is filed.
Couples need to acquire a marriage license in advance of their marriage ceremony.
A marriage certificate is a document that shows you and your partner are legally married.
Psst make sure you sign your prenup before you sign your marriage certificate!
Party (no, not that kind of party)
We know it is unjust and appalling, but in most states furry children are still technically considered “property” under the law. A “Petnup clause,” as we like to call it, allows you to include the custody of your current or future pets in your prenup. Why include this? Because should you split in the future, it is unlikely that a Court will participate in enforcing or supervising a “shared” parenting arrangement for your fluff-child without one. YIKES!
In order to determine which of you is better suited to take ownership of the pets in a divorce, you need to keep in mind the time it takes to care for a furry child, including walks, play dates, and general availability. What do vet bills cost? What about haircuts? Does Fluffster have any serious medical issues? A Petnup clause can cover all of the above.
A prenup, or prenuptial agreement is a private legal contract made between two people who plan to get legally married. A prenup outlines how certain property rights and financial obligations will be delineated between the individuals, as a condition of getting married. A prenup allows couples to contract around state divorce laws and decide for themselves what is considered marital or non-marital property in the event of divorce or death.
We all love lawyers, right? (just kidding). Lawyers can be useful sometimes though, like when you have questions about how your legal rights will be impacted with respect to a prenuptial agreement. And, before you sign away those rights, it is incredibly important that you understand the implications of doing so. A “prenup lawyer” is typically a matrimonial lawyer, who practices in the field relating to all things family law.
Revisions and changes to your prenup
Separation / Legal Separation
Types of “Property”