Creating a Prenup for a Second Marriage

Posted by Josh Valentine | Apr 16, 2021

When marrying for the second time, you will have many things to consider, likely many more than when you first walked down the aisle. Where will you live? How should you co-parent a blended family? How should you manage your joint retirement plans?

At this point in your life, you may have significant assets. You may have purchased your home and other properties, grown a business and built up retirement funds. You may also have children from your first marriage.

Given the significant financial consequences of a second marriage, it would be prudent to formalize your family plans should you pass away or your marriage end. For these reasons, couples about to enter into a second marriage would particularly benefit from making a prenuptial agreement.

What is a prenup

A prenuptial agreement, or prenup, is a contract between you that will outline your agreed financial obligations to each other and, often most importantly, lay out what will happen if your marriage should come to an end.  North Carolina follows the Uniform Prenuptial Agreement Act (UPAA), which means prenups are legally enforceable as long as they are made honestly and entered into voluntarily. Prenups don't go into effect until you are married, and they can be amended if you both choose.

Why get a prenup

Prenups may seem unromantic, but they facilitate vital discussions that couples should be having before they tie the knot.

They can alleviate fears and concerns that might hold them back and allow them to go into the marriage knowing that both parties will be cared for if things break down. Prenups are already very popular in marriages where one party has substantially more assets than the other. Still, they can be particularly beneficial for those embarking on second, or later-in-life marriages.

Your prenup can set out how you and your partner will support yourselves in your married life. If you are approaching or past retirement age, you can agree on a plan for how you will withdraw retirement assets between you to fund your household costs and maintain your life together.

Your prenup can also specify that an estate plan is put into place to ensure that your children are provided for. Were you to remarry without considering estate planning, your family business could be liquidated, or your assets passed in full to your spouse and subsequently on to their children, bypassing your own. You can make provisions, not just for your children and family property, but also to protect a business and intellectual property rights.

Experienced North Carolina Family Law Attorneys

Part of caring for your partner is being willing to have difficult conversations before encountering trouble in your relationship. After all, it is wise to fix the roof while the sun is shining.

If you are considering a second marriage, schedule a consultation with our experienced family law attorneys who can discuss your needs, and if you choose, guide you through your prenuptial agreement. Caulder and Valentine have offices in Shelby and Gastonia, and you can reach us on 704-470-2440 or contact us online.

About the Author

Josh Valentine

You could say Josh has a God-given ability for sustaining long-term relationships. He and his wife first met in elementary school and went to Gardner Webb University (GWU) together, where they tied for number 1 in their class. Then, they both started law school on the same day of their graduation and got married during their first semester. He has also known his law partner Blake Caulder since Kindergarten. Theirs is the perfect partnership. “He’s the brake; I am the accelerator,” Josh says. Both Josh and his wife attended an innovative program at Charlotte Law School that allowed them to complete law school in two years instead of the typical three. His wife graduated and passed the North Carolina bar at age 20, becoming one of the youngest attorneys in the state. He readily admits she’s smarter than him. Of course, Josh went on to pass the North Carolina State Bar himself and later the South Carolina State Bar. While in school, he was Associate Editor of the Law Review and received accolades like Phi Delta Phi International Legal Honor Society membership, Order of the Crown, Pro Bono Honors, CALI Awards (highest grade). In his career as a lawyer, he has been admitted to the United States Federal Court for the Western District of North Carolina, is a member of the American Association of Premier DUI Attorneys, and completed training for DWI Detection & Standardized Field Sobriety Testing. Josh has also been named to the Top 40 Under 40 for Criminal Defense by The National Trial Lawyers, the Business North Carolina 2019 Legal Elite for Criminal Defense, and the 10 Best Attorneys for Client Satisfaction by the American Institute of Criminal Law Attorneys three years in a row (2016, 2017, and 2018). Community involvement has been important to Josh all his life. In high school, he participated in building a Holocaust museum that has become internationally regarded. He and his wife are actively engaged in animal rescue, which currently means seven cats and two kittens. He served in prison ministry and assisted with fundraiser banquets there, and he provides pro bono and reduced fee legal services to those in need. As if all of that weren’t enough, Josh also mentors high risk youth and helps with his church’s youth group. He participates in other community volunteer projects involving construction, remodeling, drywall, painting, and landscaping. He’s an active student of the Bible and has traveled to Israel, Brazil, and Europe for mission work. No one can say Josh isn’t a well-rounded individual. In his spare time, he likes to play softball, basketball, and tennis, and he can play the piano and trombone. Sometimes on weekends, believe it or not, he enjoys pouring and finishing concrete with friends who own a concrete and grading business. In his law practice, Josh has made it a point to develop positive relationships with officers, clerks, and district attorneys, which has proven invaluable in delivering positive results for his clients. It’s important to him to both listen to his clients and fight for them. Law enforcement officers have important responsibilities to keep our communities safe and uphold the law, but one of the responsibilities of attorneys is to make sure officers do their job correctly. Josh considers it his job to hold them accountable for their actions. Josh is a person of deep faith. He knows that the established order of our universe and strength of America’s Judeo-Christian influenced court system is built on God’s word. His passion to serve each client with innovation, excellence and integrity is a byproduct of his faith. When asked why he became a lawyer, Josh says, “All through my life, I have personally witnessed family members and very close friends endure divorce, child custody battles, bankruptcy, civil lawsuits, and even fraudulent criminal accusations. I both saw and experienced the stress such events can place on an individual, and I realized that everyone, at some point in their life, needs hope, comfort, and encouragement. In each one of those situations, the person who was best situated to provide that vital support was their lawyer. So that’s why I became an attorney. I understand what you are going through, and I’m here to help you. Our office is focused on meeting your needs and guiding you through what may be the most difficult time of your life.” Education: Charlotte School of Law J.D., Magna Cum Laude Class Rank – 21 of 328 Associate Editor of Charlotte School of Law Law Review Certification and Concentration in Employment Law Phi Delta Phi International Legal Honor Society Order of the Crown Pro Bono Honors CALI Awards (Highest Grade)—Lawyering Process I and Contracts I Full Scholarship Gardner-Webb University B.S. in Accounting, Summa Cum Laude Distinguished Senior Student Award – Highest GPA Alpha Sigma Lambda National Honorary Society Bar Admissions: North Carolina State Bar