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A pre-wedding legal checklist

Before you may legally wed, you must obtain a marriage license. Depending on where you live and where you opt to hold your marriage ceremony, you may be required to submit to blood testing and other mandates before you may obtain your marriage license. While these state requirements are among the only legal requirements you must respect before you may legally wed, it is important to consider a few other items on your hypothetical pre-wedding legal checklist.

We have noted previously that drafting a prenuptial agreement in advance of your wedding can help to ensure that you and your partner’s interests are protected in the event of divorce. However, drafting this kind of legal contract can also help you clarify your financial and moral expectations of your marriage before you walk down the aisle. Taking time to scrutinize your expectations and values together may save you from marital tension later on.

While an attorney experienced in matters of family law can aid you in drafting your prenuptial agreement, only you and your partner can decide which issues you ultimately address within this document. Financial issues are the most obvious ones to include, and are often the most enforceable because numbers are inherently objective. However, you may also wish to include provisions related to privacy on social media, religious expectations or any other issue that is important to you and can be addressed in this kind of contract.

Drafting a prenuptial agreement can be a somewhat stressful process. However, you may save yourself, your partner and your marriage a great deal of stress by navigating certain issues within this context before you say, “I do.”

Source: The Huffington Post, “A Divorce Lawyer's Advice Before You Say 'I Do',” Krista Barth, Oct. 27, 2014

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