Premarital and Postnuptial Agreements


Illinois Premarital and Postnuptial Agreements

Marrying couples are often uncomfortable addressing the need for a premarital agreement. Yet, with the momentous property implications that marriage brings, it makes sense to protect assets.

Premarital agreements are usually drawn up from scratch so that they can address the unique needs of individuals and soon-to-be married couples. Most often they are used to provide or prevent alimony and to protect property acquired prior to the marriage, like:

  • Inherited property
  • Property that is already designated for inheritance by someone other than the new spouse, like a child or children from a previous marriage

In addition to addressing property acquired before marriage, premarital agreements can be used to protect property and assets that couples anticipate receiving during a marriage. For instance, if you believe you will inherit money after you marry, a premarital agreement can stipulate that the money (or other anticipated money) will become your property, not marital property.

Once a marriage begins, or once a premarital agreement is created, it’s important to bear in mind that your marital agreement options don’t stop. Premarital agreements can be amended or terminated. Property can be transferred in order to share or protect it. A postnuptial agreement can be created. Postnuptial agreements are similar to premarital agreements but are initiated after a marriage starts.

Premarital and postnuptial agreements are being used more and more to resolve potential property issues and to ease legal processes upon divorce or death. For more information about premarital and postnuptial agreements, contact Elliot Heidelberger. Visit us in one of our three offices conveniently located in Naperville, Hanover Park and Chicago offices at (847) 497-5020