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How can you protect yourself in case of divorce?

Texas readers may have read about the legal drama that is unfolding between the famous actor Johnny Depp and his wife, Amber Heard. Following a divorce filing just 15 months after they got married, the two are now locked in a legal battle over spousal support and other financial matters. This battle could have been largely avoided if the couple had taken certain steps before they got married.

When Heard filed for divorce, she requested spousal support from the world-famous actor. In return, Depp asked that a judge deny this request and rule that Heard must pay her own legal fees. Reports indicate that they did not have a prenuptial agreement, despite the wealth involved.

Prenuptial agreements can be a smart decision for any couple, no matter their income level. This legal protection is particularly prudent for couples who come into a marriage with significant assets, are older and/or have children from a previous relationship. A prenup can make a divorce easier by outlining how property will be divided and what will happen to assets accumulated during the marriage in the event that a divorce follows. It can also outline how and if spousal support will be paid.

When a Texas couple is considering marriage, it is beneficial to also consider how to prepare financially for this step. Drafting a prenuptial agreement is not planning to divorce; rather, it is a smart way to create a contingency plan. A lawyer can help a person decide if this is the best step and draft an agreement that is tailored to his or her individual needs. 

Source: cnbc.com, "Don't be like Johnny Depp, get a prenup", Kelli B. Grant, May 27, 2016

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