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Murdoch divorce made use of prenuptial and postnuptial agreement

Maryland residents may be aware of the high-profile divorce of media mogul Rupert Murdoch and his wife Wendi Murdoch. The end of the marriage has made headlines across the nation due to the enormous wealth held by the couple, accompanied by speculation on whether the divorce would be highly contentious. The matter was recently resolved, however, with the announcement that the couple have reached a settlement. That process was likely aided by the existence of not only a prenuptial agreement, but more than one postnuptial agreement, as well. The Murdochs wealth is largely tied into publishing company News Corporation and 21st Century Fox. Those holdings are estimated to be worth around $13 billion. The couple have two young daughters together, and Mr. Murdoch has four other children from previous marriages. All six children hold equal interests in the family trust, which contains most of the wealth amassed by Murdoch's media…

Simply having a prenuptial agreement is not enough

Once a Maryland couple has decided to make use of a prenuptial agreement, many gain an immediate peace of mind, knowing that this important financial planning tool will be a part of their future lives. However, many are unaware of the ease with which these documents can be challenged in court, and fail to take the necessary precautions to ensure that the guidelines laid out within their prenuptial agreement are adhered to if the need should ever arise. As a result, many prenups are created that will ultimately be rendered useless in a court of law. One step that can help address this risk involves taking an aggressive and detail-minded approach to the financial disclosure portion of the process. Drafting a prenup requires the full disclosure of each party's financial standing. This includes income, assets, debt and other liabilities. Without a comprehensive disclosure, one party can later claim that they…

Can a prenuptial agreement actually reinforce a marriage?

When choosing to legally bind yourself to another human being, though unfortunate, it may be necessary to consider what would happen in the event that such bonds were broken. For Maryland couples, one of the most quick and effective ways to assess these matters is preparing for them via a prenuptial agreement. While some may view the formation of such an agreement as an anticipation of divorce, it is important to remember that acting responsibly in the present is one of the best ways to combat regret in the future. Still, for some happy couples the idea of forming a prenuptial agreement can be a difficult concept to wrap their heads around, so it may be best to think of it as a living will. In the event that a person dies, his or her belongings can either be dispersed the way that person desired or by the government. Divorce…

A prenuptial agreement before marriage is not a sign of weakness

It is completely understandable for Maryland couples to be hesitant when it comes to thinking about a prenuptial agreement before marriage. After all, the last thing any future newlywed wants to think about is what will happen in the event that the marriage falls apart. Some may even refrain from discussing a prenuptial agreement with their significant other with a fear that such a topic may show a lack of conviction. It is important to note, however, that these fears can very well lead to costly complications in the event that a divorce does unfortunately take place. One way that may help couples hesitant to bring the topic up is thinking of prenuptial agreements as a will. With an agreement, both people will be able to decide where their properties go, but, without such an agreement, the property will largely be divided based on the government's decisions through state laws. Business…

A prenuptial agreement may benefit marriages

Typically, many couples think that entering into a premarital contract is a sign that they feel that the marriage will not last. However, a prenuptial agreement may actually add more satisfaction to the marriage. These agreements are not just restricted to the rich and famous in Maryland, but are a financial planning tool that many couples may benefit from. One aspect of a prenup that brings positive results involves the disclosure portion of the process. Both parties must sit down and have a frank discussion about the nature of all of their income, assets and debt. Doing so will give each party a fuller picture of how the other approaches financial matters, which can help avoid future conflict over money matters. There are many factors that may lead a couple to consider a prenuptial agreement. If one or both own a place of residence or business there may be the…

Challenges still may exist for a Maryland prenuptial agreement

Many look to a prenuptial agreement as being a way to get all the cards out on the table before commencing a marriage. These documents can govern a lot of aspects of a Maryland marriage, with a primary concern often being the financial status of a couple in the event they divorce. However, a recent out-of-state court decision has given some individuals hope that they can void their prenuptial agreement. A recent court order nullified a prenuptial agreement on the grounds that the husband made false claims at the time the document was signed. The judge also found that the wife was put under intense pressure to sign just one day before their wedding. The judge found that these acts constituted an imposition of undue duress on the woman and used this finding to disallow the agreement. As a result of this New York decision, many other individuals are now…

Should women in high-paying jobs consider a prenuptial agreement?

Asking for a prenuptial agreement used to be somewhat of a faux pas. However, nowadays, many couples choose to put a prenuptial agreement in place in order for each person to have control over his or her own interests. In many Maryland homes, men make more money than their wives. However, because of the progress made by women in the workplace, some women make more money than their partners. Women in those situations may find a prenuptial agreement to be necessary. Putting a prenuptial agreement in place does not mean that a couple's marriage is likely to end in divorce. One legal professional refers to prenuptial agreements as "intelligent business plans." Women with significant assets may also consider keeping a separate bank account. Whether or not a divorce is in the future, a private bank account may help ensure a woman's financial independence. Unfortunately, there is not one right way…

Breaking off the engagement? Who keeps the ring?

Residents in Maryland may not have ever pondered this question before, but with many break-ups following the displayed passion of Valentine's Day, some must ask, who gets the engagement ring when things don't work out? Dividing property, especially prior to marriage seems odd, but it can often lead to conflicts among couples who can't keep it together. Couples who decide to separate prior to ever having walked down the aisle must take into account many of the same factors that divorcing couples do. Many states have differing laws on what to do with the engagement ring upon a break-up. Some consider the ring an outright gift, especially if given on a holiday, while others view it as a condition gift to be given back once the wedding is called off. In Maryland, as a general rule, the ring is considered to be a conditional gift that is to be returned…

Taking your time with the divorce now may save you later

Many Maryland couples who are experiencing the hurt and discord associated with divorce proceedings often just want the whole thing completed as quickly as possible. Some experts are cautioning against that impulse though in order to save you money and further heartache down the road. Of the divorce lawyers who were interviewed, the consensus seems to be that when going through the difficult divorce proceedings, it is best to (1) be truthful, (2) know your assets, and (3) choose your timing carefully. These three pieces of advice can go a long way in helping couples avoid a hasty end to the marriage that leaves money or future headaches on the table. 1. Be truthfulIf you are dishonest about either financial or non-financial aspects of your marriage, it may come back to haunt you in court and in your pocketbook. If you need to, hire a financial expert to help you…

When thinking divorce, have you considered these consequences?

Between the poor economy, fiscal cliff nightmare, and last year's Hurricane Sandy, Maryland residents may be wondering what other unexpected hit their wallets might be taking this year. Well, those of you considering divorce might have to consider more possibilities than you think. Divorce often brings with it the many assumed expenses of legal fees, split assets, and custody battles. Some of these expenses may be able to be mitigated by a solidly drafted prenuptial agreement, but not all. For many, there are also numerous other considerations that have not been considered that my stretch our financial limits further than we had hoped. Tax consequences of divorce are one area where many might not realize that they are significantly impacted. Changing filing status from a joint filing to single or head of household can greatly affect one's tax liabilities. Another area many don't realize the change in family status may…