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Prenuptial agreements becoming increasingly popular

According to CBS News, a 2011 study indicates that prenuptial agreements have increased nationwide by 73 percent in a five-year period, and Broward County is no exception. Interestingly, prenup requests by women account for much of the increase. Today's prenups are clearly not only the tool of the wealthy.

Prenuptial agreements are important for several reasons. People are marrying later in life than they were in the 1990s, meaning that each party may have substantial assets and debts. In this sluggish economy, even engaged couples are protective of their wealth and averse to adding a spouse's debts to their name. Indeed, couples are also aware of America's high divorce rate although this rate is finally shrinking.

While a prenup may seem too practical to be romantic, an important component of the agreement is the financial discussion it engenders. Financial difficulties are one of the top reasons for divorce. When everything is discussed and negotiated before marriage, the awkwardness involved in discussing finances may be eliminated, opening the lines of communication.

Even though prenups are highly beneficial, they should not be do-it-yourself projects. According to CBS, even notarized self-generated documents do no stand up in court. Lawyers who specialize in prenuptial agreements can help couples create a document that not only includes obvious assets and liabilities but also more tenuous items like possible inheritances, sentimental furniture and even pets. It is a good idea to uncover different philosophies regarding assets before couples tie the knot. Since money matters contribute to divorce as frequently as infidelity and poor communication, drafting a prenup with experienced attorneys can be a tremendous benefit that far exceeds its initial cost. Source: CBS News, 'Why a prenup may be right for you." Mellody Hobson, May 29, 2013.

Source: CBS News, "Why a prenup may be right for you", MELLODY HOBSON, May 29, 2013