April 3, 2014. A popular budgeting and financial planning website, mint.com, is used by many to track expenses or save for a particular expense, like a vacation or home repair. The mint.com users can feel proud of themselves for being financially savvy in planning for their economic future. Surprisingly, many of these folks are perhaps missing the big picture. Sure, they know they know where their $4.96 went (Starbucks), but do they know where their assets are going in case of divorce or death? Many people like to focus on the here and the now. No one wants to think of the “what ifs,” especially if they are bad “what ifs.” Unfortunately 50% of marriages end in divorce.
The only way to protect your assets in the case of divorce is to sign a premarital agreement, commonly referred to as a “pre-nupt.” Your attorney draws up a contract stating the assets you have and what would happen to them in case of divorce. Signing a premarital agreement protects retirement accounts, property and inheritances. This can be particularly important in the event of second marriages. It may be even more important to protect your assets for your children or other heirs.
Under Iowa law, an inheritance is generally considered separate property, but the court can overrule that general principle if it would be unjust not to split the inherited property. Addressing inherited property in a pre-marital agreement provides another layer of insulation to protect that property.
Read Attorney Breandan Donahue's take on Mint.com and estate planning HERE. For more information regarding Mint.com or family law, contact the Goosmann Law Firm at email@example.com or call 712-226-4000.