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Does a Senior Citizen Heading to the Altar Need a Prenuptial Agreement?

Thanks to advances in medical care and other societal improvements, people in the United States are living longer than ever before in the nation’s history. In addition to longer lives, more Americans are also healthier and more active as they grow older. Therefore, more people in their Golden Years are marrying and divorcing than previously occurred. With these trends in mind, a fair and important question is does a senior citizen heading to the altar need a prenuptial agreement?

When contemplating the need of a prenuptial agreement when a senior citizen is heading to the alter necessitates a consideration of a number of specific points:

  • Financial status of each person
  • Offspring from a prior marriage
  • State objectives of each individual
  • Age of each person
Financial Status of Each Person

On many levels, the most important consideration that comes into play when a senior citizen makes the decision to marry and the prospect of a prenuptial agreement is on the table is the financial status of the parties. In other words, the primary factor taken into consideration regarding the necessity of a prenuptial agreement is the same for an older American as it is for a younger person: the financial interests and any monetary disparity between the engaged couple.

Offspring from Prior Marriage

Another key reason why a prenuptial agreement likely is wise when a senior citizen elects to marry is if that individual has children from another reason. A person who has children and is getting married as an older person likely wants to be certain that predetermined assets go to that individual’s children upon death.

Of course, a last will and testament or a trust are tools for the division of assets upon death. However, the signing of a prenuptial by an engaged couple makes it clear which assets will be a divisible part of the marital estate upon divorce. A prenuptial agreement is the best instrument to not only protect the interests of a spouse upon a divorce but those of his or her offspring from a prior marriage or relationship.

State Objectives of Each Individual

Another reason why a senior citizen may want to create a prenuptial agreement prior to marriage is to ensure that each party heading the altar will be able to set forth his or her financial objectives when it comes to assets earned of created during the marriage. For example, a person with greater assets who will likely generate more wealth during the marriage certainly may want his of or her existing spouse to benefit to some degree. However, that person may also be in a position at which he or she wants to make sure offspring from another marriage are protected once the marriage occurs.

Age of Each Person

A final primary consideration that needs to be borne in mind when it comes to the necessity of a senior citizen obtaining a prenup prior to marriage is the age of the parties. In situations in which one of the prospective spouses is notable older than the other, a prenuptial agreement oftentimes is in order.

There likely is a disparity in income between the older person and the younger individual. The older party may also have a prior family with children and even grandchildren that the individual wants to protect.

Of course, a prenuptial agreement may add at least some level of stability to the overall family structure when there is an age disparity. The family of the older person to be married is likely to be less unsure or worried about the impact the marriage might have on their financial interests.

An older person heading to the altar interested in obtaining a prenup is wise to seek skilled, experienced legal representation. A family law lawyer can further explain the ins and outs of the benefits of a prenuptial agreement for an older person who is going to be married. As a matter of common practice, a lawyer typically will not charge an attorney fee for an initial consultation regarding the drafting of a prenuptial agreement for an older person who has made the decision to marry.

If you are contemplating marriage and the need for a prenuptial agreement, the legal team at the Law Offices of Peter Van Aulen. You can reach us any time that is convenient for you by calling 201-845-7400.

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