Prenuptial Agreements in Michigan

The Kronzek Firm 

For many of us, we think of prenups as something that serial divorcees and rich people use. While this can be the case, prenups may be useful for everyday partners considering marriage. Prenuptial agreements are sometimes called antenuptial agreements here in Michigan. 

Prenups aren’t a tool to facilitate divorce. Rather, they are a tool to protect the partners’ interests. There are negative connotations associated with prenups. However, every day, Ingham, Eaton, and Clinton County residents choose to use a prenup to plan for their future together. 

What exactly is a “prenup”?

A prenuptial agreement, or prenup for short, is a contract made between partners prior to marriage. It can detail agreements made about finances, child rearing, and other provisions. 

Negotiating the terms of a prenup can be helpful to flush out shared financial goals. Prenups are useful tools for many couples and are especially important in cases of blended families and wealth disparities between the to-be spouses. 

Why are prenups specifically useful in blended families?

Prenups can be useful for blended families. When one spouse dies, the surviving spouse often inherits a great amount of the deceased spouse’s estate. If there are kids from a past marriage or relationship, those kids may not receive what they think is their fair share. 

This inequity in estate distribution often happens because the non-biological or non-adoptive new spouse is not legally obligated to provide for his or her stepchild. 

As Michigan families grow increasingly diverse, prenups are an option for many different situations. Prenups can be used for blended families who hope to grow their home through adoption or births. Prenups can detail the partners’ desires regarding the care and custody of living and future children, but in the end, a prenuptial agreement will never be binding to determine child custody since that decision is required to be approved by a family court judge in all custody disputes. 

For couples without children, but with a dog or cat, you can even include the “custody” of pets in a prenup! 

The role of prenups to preserve finances

If one partner has significant debt or is coming into the marriage with a lot of money, a prenup can be a useful tool. It can shield a partner from their fiance’s debt load. It can also protect the independence of a spouse’s already-acquired assets.

A prenup can serve as an important starting point for a couple’s shared financial goals. From Lansing to Haslett, East Lansing, to Okemos, couples are realizing the benefits of this type of contract. 

It is also important to understand that a prenuptial agreement must be properly drafted to confirm with Michigan’s specific requirements. However, even the most perfectly drafted contracts can be challenged in court. In fact the attorneys at The Kronzek Firm have been extremely successful in having the courts set aside well drafted prenups. The take away here is that there are no guarantees that a prenup will be enforced by your judge, but it may be a good starting point. 

The Kronzek Firm can help with your family’s goals!

Our well rated family law attorneys have seen it all. We understand that marriage is full of twists and turns! If you have any family law questions, you have visited the right website. You can visit our homepage to learn all about us. Call (517) 886-1000 to schedule a meeting with our attorneys. We are here every day, 24 hours a day, to help with a crisis and are available during our normal business hours for non-emergencies. We’ve helped thousands of clients during almost 30 years in Lansing.