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What’s the difference between a prenup and a postnup?

On Behalf of | Aug 16, 2022 | Family Law

When couples marry, they often work out a contract known as a prenuptial agreement – or “prenup” for short. Essentially, a prenup protects a person’s assets if there’s ever a need for divorce. In other words, there may be a guarantee on what assets or finances are taken with you after divorce. 

Even if prenups are commonly made, however, not everyone knows about them until well after marriage. In this case, people may alleviate their troubles by writing up a postnuptial agreement (or “postnup”). In much the same way a prenup works, a postnup is intended to protect people’s assets in a divorce.

Are there any major differences between a prenup and a postnup? If a postnup works just the same as a prenup, then why not just wait to make the contract until after marriage? Is a prenup better than a postnup?

These are questions you may have when deciding to make a prenup or postnup. Here’s what you should know:

Prenups versus postnups 

In essence, the greatest difference between a prenup and a postnup is that a prenup is made before marriage, while a postnup is made after marriage. The other major difference between a prenup and a postnup may be why you intend to create one. 

People may write up a prenup because they are coming into a relationship with a large number of assets compared to their intended spouse or because they have children from another marriage or relationship that they wish to give a part or all of their estate to in the event of death. 

Postnups are often created because people didn’t recognize the value of a prenup before they married – that doesn’t mean that’s the only reason people write postnups. Some couples will use a postnup to revise a prenup as their marriage evolves. Others use prenups to address a situation that has changed, especially if one spouse starts a business or inherits a large estate.

Prenups and postnups aren’t easy to write. You may wish to contact legal support to ensure your contract is correctly written.