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Woods may remarry, but prenuptial agreement required

What is a prenuptial agreement? Can it protect my interest in my family's business? Is it right for my fiancé and I? Engaged couples in Massachusetts and elsewhere often ask these and other similar questions. Recently, a famous golfer who is allegedly reconciling with his ex-wife has led to news reports of a possible prenuptial agreement.

According to recent stories, golfer Tiger Woods would like to remarry his ex-wife. Woods' ex-wife has reportedly considered the possibility of reconciling, but would only do so if Woods agreed to a very specific prenuptial agreement. Reportedly, the agreement would include a provision that awards the ex-wife in excess of $300 million if Woods cheats on her. The couple filed for divorce in 2010 after Woods allegedly had multiple extramarital affairs.

Prenuptial agreements, which also are known as prenups or premarital agreements, may be used for many different reasons, including a desire to protect an individual's property and a need to protect one party from the other party's debts. Prenuptial agreements may also be used to describe how the parties' financial affairs may be handled throughout the marriage and clarify how the parties are to resolve disputes if the parties ultimately divorce.

Prenuptial agreements may be especially important for individuals with families who are entering into a second marriage. A prenuptial agreement may explain a party's intentions as to how property may be divided if one party were to pass away or the parties were to divorce. If a party with children entering into a second marriage does not draft a prenuptial agreement, his or her spouse may claim ownership to assets that the party wanted to retain as separate property. This outcome may go against the party's wishes of having the assets passed to their children; a prenuptial agreement is a proper mechanism by which a party' can carry out his or her wishes with respect to property or assets.

Prenuptial agreements may be drafted for many individuals, including engaged couples and couples entering into same-sex marriages. A prenuptial agreement has many advantages and may provide clarification and determination for the protection of an individual's assets.

Source: San Francisco Chronicle, "Tiger reportedly wants to remarry ex," Jan. 17, 2013

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