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Prenup can deal with money management and property division

When it comes to Massachusetts couples who are engaged to be married, sharing information can play an important role. Some say what you don't know can't hurt you, but that may be best limited to past romances and not finances. Certain money-related discussions may ultimately lead to the protection of both parties in property division in the event of a subsequent divorce. This does not mean a divorce must be anticipated, but it is one of life's realities for many people.

Sharing debt details may be the place to start, and this is an opportunity to decide whether each party will be separately responsible for paying his or her debt, or will it be a shared responsibility. This may lead to conversations about whether to pool their money or keep it separate. There is no right or wrong approach, but it is an important decision to make before the marriage. Some couples prefer to set up a joint account for household expenses while keeping their individual, personal accounts for other funds. They might even choose to also have a joint savings account for emergencies or a vacation fund.

Knowing about each other's tax problems can avoid unpleasant surprises. If the couple chooses to file joint taxes, both will be responsible for paying off tax debts associated with the returns. Another conversation that might prove wise to have before the marriage is the one about future care for each spouse's aging parents. If this will be the responsibility of the couple, advance knowledge can help them save and prepare for it.

Some people find it difficult to divulge previous mistakes, often leading to a partner only learning about child support and alimony obligations after the marriage. This could put a strain on the relationship of any newly married couple. This and any other debts brought into a marriage, along with any assets owned by each spouse, may be best dealt with in a prenuptial agreement. With the support and guidance of an experienced Massachusetts family law attorney, an agreement can be drafted to specify how the couple will handle their finances in the marriage and ensure fair property division in the event of a divorce.

Source: wusa9.com, "5 money questions you should ask before getting married", Janey Berry-Johnson, Accessed on June 2, 2017

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