Wedding Planning Series Part I: Do you need a prenup?

At the beginning of a marriage, no one wants to think about it ending in divorce. A prenuptial agreement is essentially a contact between potential spouses. The agreement will set out certain rights and responsibilities of each spouse in the event the marriage ends in divorce.

It is a common misconception that a Prenuptial Agreement is only for the wealthy. Just because you are not Elon Musk or have a six-figure contract like Tom Brady doesn’t mean that a Prenuptial Agreement doesn’t have value to you. You may be protecting your income or the minimal assets you are bringing into the marriage, or you may be protecting what you don’t even have yet.

Take a look at some of the requirements for a Prenup in New Jersey:

  • The agreement must be in writing.
  • It must have a list of assets owned by the parties attached to the agreement.
  • Or the parties can acknowledge in writing they have voluntarily waived any disclosure of assets.

What should a Prenup include

  • Spousal support or division of assets.
  • Where one spouse has a large asset like a business, the agreement must set out how the asset will be divided in the event of divorce, if at all.
  • Protection of real estate.

The only issues you cannot address with a Prenuptial Agreement are custody and child support relating to the children. Those are issues that require a careful analysis of the best interests of the children based upon all the circumstances at the time of the divorce.

Even if you don’t know exactly what you would want in your Prenuptial Agreement, such as how you would want to split assets or how you would want to address alimony, we can talk you through it to help you craft a Prenuptial Agreement that will protect you in the future. The best result, of course, is that you never need it. Having a Prenuptial Agreement is like insurance: we all hope we never have to use it, but it is there if we need it.

About the Author


John Nachlinger is a co-founder and managing attorney of Netsquire, a family law firm focused on streamlining divorces through effective mediation, settlement drafting, and court filing assistance. As a New Jersey Supreme Court Certified Matrimonial Law Attorney and Qualified Mediator, John guides couples toward equitable agreements without the cost and stress of litigation.

Recognized as a New Jersey Super Lawyer for over a decade, John’s client-focused approach aims to foster understanding during challenging transitions. With a background spanning top law journals, judicial clerkships, and boutique family law firms, John now applies his analytical skills to create workable solutions for all parties. His mediation services reshape the divorce journey by prioritizing compassion and compromise.

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