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Postnuptial agreement divorce protection for stay-at-home parents

When couples in California start a family, they often decide that it might be in the best interest of the children if one of the parents puts their career on hold in order to stay at home and care for their children. With statistics showing that about half of all American marriages end in divorce, the stay-at-home parent may be at a disadvantage. Re-entering the employment market after some years at home may prove to be difficult.

It may be a good idea to remain in contact with colleagues and continue networking when possible. The stay-at-home parent may be able to continue part-time or freelance work in order not to lose contact with the working world. In the event of a divorce, the court may not order permanent alimony, but only alimony to cover a period that will allow the parent to get back on his or her feet. A solution for this potential problem may be to cover the eventuality in a prenuptial agreement; however, the couple may not have anticipated the situation.

If the couple failed to address this issue in a prenuptial agreement, all is not lost. Provisions to protect the financial interests of the stay-at-home parent can be made in a postnuptial agreement. Couples may want to craft such an agreement upon their decision for one parent to leave their profession. Alimony and other financial agreements may be recorded to avoid unpleasant litigation in the event of a divorce.

Giving up one’s career is undoubtedly a great sacrifice, and although it may benefit the children, it warrants proper protection in the event of a divorce. California parents who are unsure of the legalities of prenuptial and postnuptial agreements are free to utilize the available guidance to achieve effective protection. Whichever option a family chooses, having suitable protection in place may provide peace of mind.

Source: Forbes, "Deciding To Become A Stay-At-Home Mom? Consider This Cautionary Tale", Jeff Landers, May 29, 2014

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Victoria S. Linder Law Office
5303 Folsom Boulevard
Sacramento, CA 95819

Phone: 916-905-4805
Fax: 916-498-0127
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