Prenuptial Agreement In Singapore
Pre-marital agreements aren’t for the wealthy any longer. Marriage is one of the most important decisions you’ll ever make.. If a prenuptial agreement isn’t part of your wedding plans, maybe it should be. A lot of happily married couples use premarital contracts.
Everything is fair in love and marriage, or so they thought. What happens when you are going through a divorce or if your loved one has passed on. What will happen to your assets and liquid funds?
Rather than a recipe for divorce, a prenuptial agreement can spell out rights and responsibilities during marriage and lead to fewer arguments about finances.
Discussing a prenuptial agreement (prenup) with your future spouse is not a romantic topic, but marriage is a legally binding contract between two people that carries both rights and responsibilities.
If you have your own business, actively manage your stock accounts, own real estate, are due an inheritance, already own significant property, or simply want to avoid the risks inherent in divorce, a prenup may be right for you.
Frequently Asked Questions On Prenuptial Agreement
In the coming weeks, we will update this article with more FAQs as couples like you frequently research for answers. Some of the more common questions are;
What is a Prenuptial Agreement?
A “prenuptial agreement” is a contract between two future spouses that settles issues of property division, finances, assets and support in the event of death or divorce.
In Singapore a prenuptial agreement is made prior to marriage and will take effect as soon as the couple marries. Prenuptial agreements must be in writing and signed by both future spouses before a notary public.
Both parties must declare and be transparent in declaring all their assets. It would be best if each party is represented by a lawyer to assist them in the process.
How Does Prenup Protect You?
Basically all tangible and intangible assets and liabilities need to be declared at the time of the prenup agreement preparation.
However, if you own any property prior to getting hitched, you will get to still keep that property as it is listed as an asset that you owned before you got married.
So in a divorce scenario, you will still get to walk away with this property that you owned and there will be no further arguments as to who this property belongs to, should anything untoward happen further in your marriage.
By having a prenup, it will simplify a divorce process as all assets divisions have been clearly stated in the prenup agreement. It is also likely to reduce any divorce costs as there will not be a need for extended court hearings on division of assets.
Who Needs A Prenup?
You might want to consider a prenuptial agreement if one or more of the below checks out for you;
- you own a business/businesses,
- receive a substantial inheritance,
- expecting a large influx of income,
- you or your soon-to-be-spouse is wealthier,
- you own a practice,
- valuable property such as real estate(s), investments and/or savings
Declaring Assets And Liabilities
As mentioned above, you will need to fully disclose all assets and liabilities for the prenup agreement.
Put together records of your most recent financial statements, investments, home mortgage, boats, yachts or any high cost assets that you own, along with your bank statements. Do bear in mind that these information will be shared with your spouse-to-be.
You will declare not only assets but also liabilities such as any debts (credit cards, loans, etc) in the prenup agreement.
In the prenuptial agreement, not only assets are being covered but also liabilities. For example debts. Debts can be stated as either shared debts or separate debts. For shared debts, it means the debts fall upon both parties and will be divided in case of a divorce.
Both parties are liable to pay up the debts . As for separate debts, it means that one person shoulder the responsibility of clearing the debt upon divorce.
Who is liable to pay off the debts depend on who has incurred the debt or who agreed to take on that responsibility.
Basically, a prenuptial agreement covers most things except that it doesn’t cover custody of children or child support in a divorce case.
For divorce matters, the prenuptial agreement will only help in the financial assets and other monetary matters and might help to alleviate any division of assets during the divorce process.
Can A Prenup Protect Future Inheritance?
Do you happen to know should a good friend or close relative has included you in their Will – should anything untoward happen to them? If you do, you should talk to a lawyer about disclosing it in the prenup agreement.
Often when a parent remarries, he or she may also want to protect the inheritance of the children.
How Much Does It Cost To Get A Prenuptial Agreement?
It may cost anywhere between $800- $1500. Different services would cost differently. One example is to either prepare, draft up OR review on any existing prenuptial documents that have previously been prepared.
Reviewing can be done when one party has previously had a different lawyer prepare a prenuptial agreement. It’s a no-nonsense way to assure all parties that the terms are fair and equitable.
Do I Need A Lawyer For A Prenuptial Agreement?
It would be best to have a lawyer for any legal matters. By engaging a lawyer, he/she will remain objective and not be swayed by emotions.
Your lawyer will knowledgeably and sensitively guide you through the process of drafting, negotiating, and/or reviewing a prenuptial agreement to serve your specific needs.
A lawyer is also the one who performs crucial due diligence and helps finish the deal in your best interest.
What Happens If You Don’t Get A Prenup?
Couples nowadays tend to date longer and marry later in their life. This enables them to accumulate wealth and assets (eg;business or properties) that need protection.
The Court will decide – Not You, what will happen to your future when you split up.
A prenup can help make for a less contentious split and making the process neat in the event of a divorce.
Can Prenup Protect My Pension?
It may. The Court will decide after hearing both sides and see if the agreement is fair and whether it contravenes and act such as the Women’s Charter.
Can You Fight A Prenup Agreement?
Yes you may, but you will have to provide reasons to the Court. The Court is the final arbiter.
Some of the above answers may or may not apply to you. But as you can see, you now know the importance and benefits of having a prenuptial agreement. Don’t know where to go from here?
You can start by sharing this post and who knows – it might be a conversation starter between the 2 of you.
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