Marriage is a happy time, so it’s natural for Stockton couples to be reluctant to broach the subject of a prenuptial agreement. However, if you are a business owner or have a lot of assets in your possession, you want to enter into the marriage with a clear understanding of who owns what in the event of a divorce. Bankrate explains the importance of prenuptial agreements to certain couples.

Fairness is at the center of all prenuptial agreements. In order for the document to be considered enforceable, it must also be considered fair. This can be a bit murky after a marriage has been established, since the conditions at the beginning of the marriage might not be the same by the end of the marriage. Fairness can also depend on the state where the marriage is taking place. Each state has different laws regarding the way property is divided, and these will come into play when creating your prenup.

Most married couples have intermingled finances. This can make it tough to determine what belongs to who, even with clearly stated boundaries going into the marriage. Along with a prenup, it is recommended that you also keep separate accounts from your spouse, especially when it comes to business costs. Even if you agree that your business proceeds are your own going into the marriage, your spouse may claim that he or she helped build the company over time, either financially or by offering advice. Separate accounts make it easier to keep business and personal finances from becoming combined.

You also want to make sure that you follow the rules of your state. For instance, you might need to draft and sign the agreement well before the marriage takes place, or it could be considered invalid. Both parties must also be sober at the time of signing to prove they were of sound mind when agreeing to the terms. Also, you cannot make arrangements in a prenup regarding child custody, spousal support, or child support. These matters are left to the court to decide, and as a result, they cannot be included.