The decision of whether to enter into a prenuptial agreement is unique to every individual. North Dakota is an equitable distribution state, therefore, courts will attempt to separate marital property fairly in the event of divorce. However, certain individuals may wish to enter into prenuptial agreements to protect their financial interests and avoid judicial interference.
One of the main reasons to enter into a prenuptial agreement is to protect individual assets from creditors. Without a prenuptial agreement, one spouse may have to assume the debts of the other because creditors may attempt to satisfy debts through marital property. Another benefit of prenuptial agreements is that spouses may control how their individual property will be distributed upon death. Also, if one spouse owns a business, they may want to prevent it from being divided or controlled by the other spouse; through a prenuptial agreement, they may ensure that these business interests are protected.
Non-financial rights and responsibilities may also be addressed in prenuptial agreements. Those who plan to sacrifice a career upon entering the marriage may ensure compensation in the event of divorce by including such terms in the prenuptial agreement. Spouses may also limit the amount of spousal support that will be paid in the event of divorce.
Some individuals may feel that entering into a prenuptial agreement is not in their best interest because of the feelings of lack of trust that it engenders. Also, one spouse may feel comfortable agreeing to certain terms when the prenuptial agreement is being created only to regret their decision later. However, agreeing to certain terms at the onset of the marriage may be the most effectual way for those going through a divorce to avoid lengthy legal disputes and come to a speedier fair divorce resolution.