Remarriage after divorce and family blending can be complicated for both parties as well as the children. In addition to the emotional aspects of family blending, which can take time, you should also consider a prenuptial agreement in your arrangement. One of the reasons that prenuptial agreements are attractive to blended families is that they can protect the interests of both parties and their children from a previous relationship. Creating a comprehensive prenuptial agreement can also ensure that both parties are being up front an honest about their finances, as well as communicative about their expectations. Working through these financial issues at the outset can also prevent personal or legal disputes later on in your marriage.
For many singles who are approaching marriage for a second or third time, blending finances may be scary. You may have already gone through a messy divorce or finally regained your financial independence. Working towards sharing finances again may not be what you had in mind, despite falling in love again. Our Birmingham family law attorneys understand the complicated issues faced by clients who are entering a second or third marriage. We are sympathetic to the concerns faced by parents with children from a prior marriage. We will take the time to review your individual circumstances and help to tailor a prenuptial agreement that protects your rights and long-term family interests.
One of the first issues faced by blended families is sharing bills and expenses. Does the family share the expenses for each child? Does each parent contribute separately to their own child's care? Asking these questions from the outset will help you and your partner prepare for the future. You may not realize that you do not share the same ideas of what expenses should be shared or kept separately. Remember, there is no “right” way to blend a family, but both parties should have a clear idea of their best interests and obligations before entering a marriage.
Blended families are becoming increasingly common in Alabama and throughout the United States. When you no longer fit the mold of the “traditional family” it is important to understand the legal implications of your finances and your arrangement. Pursuing a prenuptial agreement or post-nuptial contract is one way to establish the rights and responsibilities of both parties. Remember that blending family finances goes beyond a shared bank account. Your new family will have to learn how to share income, debts, expenses, and assets. Beyond sharing information and remaining communicative, you want a clear set of responsibilities in the event of a dispute.
The first step is creating a budget for your family, identify how much you have coming in and what new expenses your family will have to absorb. You will also want to talk with your new or future spouse about retirement planning. A prenuptial plan can also protect your individual retirement as well as determine how your assets will be divided in the event of death or incapacitation. If you have been previously married and want to avoid first-time money mistakes, now is the time to start planning for your future and to consider a prenuptial agreement.
Contact Birmingham divorce and family law attorney Steven Eversole at (866) 831-5292.