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Prenuptial agreements: Think before you sign

Prenuptial agreements are often hailed for protecting a person's assets from going to a spouse during a divorce. Professional baseball and football player Deion Sanders can attest for the strength of a prenuptial agreement. He has been going through a messy divorce with his wife, who he was married to for 14 years. Along with child support payments, their prenuptial agreement has been the primary source of disputes.

The couple signed a prenuptial agreement when they married. Since divorce proceedings began, however, his wife has disputed the legality of the agreement signed years ago.

Deion's wife, Pilar, reportedly claimed she was pressured into signing the agreement. She also alleges that the prenup was partly forged. Considering these claims, she attests the prenuptial agreement is not valid. The case went to court and a judge ruled that since Pilar did sign the agreement voluntarily, the contents of the prenup are valid.

The judge's decision in regards to their prenuptial agreement demonstrates how permanent these agreements are. Signing a prenuptial agreement is a serious decision. Before signing one, it is important that one understands the potential consequences of signing this type of agreement.

When a person gets married and agrees to a prenup, it may be difficult to imagine that the prenuptial agreement would ever actually do anything other than sit and accumulate dust. Thinking of a prenuptial agreement in this way could be a mistake though, as it may actually determine what assets a person does or does not have rights to at the time of a divorce.

Source: NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth, "Judge says Pilar, Deion prenup is valid," Oct. 25, 2012

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