Exposure to the notion of a prenuptial agreement in popular media – books, movies, television shows – has given many people an understanding of the concept. It is a marital agreement that helps couples entering a marriage build a comprehensive document geared toward separating the assets and debts each individual brings into the union. Additionally, they can make certain stipulations if, in the future, a divorce becomes reality.

What people don’t realize, however, is there is another marital agreement that can be revised, edited and amended throughout the course of the marriage. It is called a postnuptial agreement and here are five reasons why you should have one.

You need a postnuptial agreement when . . .

  1. One or both parties enter the marriage with significant assets or will likely inherit significant future assets.
  2. There are children from a previous marriage.
  3. You or your spouse own a profitable business.
  4. You failed to write a prenuptial agreement but have significant assets.
  5. You recently received a large inheritance.

A prenuptial agreement, as the name would indicate, is developed prior to the wedding. The postnuptial agreement is the document that is signed after the wedding. Generally, the two marital agreements can be quite similar. However, the postnuptial agreement is essentially a running tally of non-marital assets and debts each partner accrues over the course of the marriage.

To learn more about these types of documents, it is important to discuss your legal options with an experienced family law attorney at your earliest convenience.