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More women want prenuptial agreements, statistics reveal

Washington residents may be interested in learning that the latest trends in a survey by the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers reveals that more women have been wanting prenuptial agreements. As the financial and real estate markets continue to change, there are more assets at risk in the event of a marriage dissolution. More than 46 percent of divorce lawyers interviewed in the survey revealed that they saw more women initiating the requests. For spouses seeking divorce in Seattle, Washington, it is important to consider the implications of divorce given the community property laws in the state. Community property laws maintain that spouses equally share all property and that they also equally share property acquired during the marriage.

Even if one spouse does not work, he or she may be entitled to half of all of the assets shared between the two spouses. A prenuptial agreement can trump any community property laws that exist in a state like Washington. It is up to two spouses to agree beforehand upon the division of property so that property is not split down the middle during the divorce proceeding.

A prenuptial agreement can cover the distribution of alimony awards and division of property. Often, the division of property is the most contentious issue in a high asset divorce. Alimony refers to spousal maintenance, and it is used to provide financial support for a spouse who otherwise could not support himself or herself. A spouse may wish to seek permanent alimony for the rest of his or her life, and this can be a great cost to the other spouse.

An attorney who is experienced in family law may be able to help Washington couples draft their prenuptial agreements. An attorney could answer any questions regarding important factors such as alimony, child custody and support and property division.

Source: Huffington Post, "Prenuptial Agreements Are on the Rise, And More Women Are Requesting Them", October 22, 2013

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