As prenuptial agreements gain more popularity, couples are no longer as hesitant to discuss a fair distribution of their assets should the marriage end. The legally binding contract, entered into before the couple gets married, is now common among most couples, laying out how to share assets and liabilities in the event of a divorce. What is less common, but perhaps equally important, is the post-nuptial agreement.

Illinois residents may not know that a postnuptial agreement is also a legally binding agreement, along the lines of a prenup with the main difference between the two being the timing—while the prenup is entered into before marriage, the postnup is after the couple gets married.

While couples try to be as thorough as possible in their prenups, it is not possible to envision every situation and cater to every hypothetical. Sometimes, being in the moment, with an understanding of how the finances and profits are working out, is essential to ensuring a fair distribution can be made. Better informed decisions can be incorporated into the postnuptial agreement, addressing a specific issue. Usually, it does only focus on one issue the couple agrees to.

A postnuptial agreement can also be used to change the way an issue was addressed in the prenuptial agreement. It can also deal with non-business issues, such as a more generous level of spousal support or excluding assets from marital property.

One of the main reasons couples divorce is because of a disagreement over finances. Putting parameters on assets, debts and liabilities through a postnup, prenup, or combination of both can go a long way in easing the couple’s mind and ensuring both parties are on the same financial page. Since the matters covered in these agreements pertain to complex financial decisions, it is helpful to seek the help of an experienced attorney with a financial background to ensure all bases are being covered.