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Mel Gibson Divorce a Reminder of the Benefits of a Prenup

By Nottage and Ward on September 19, 2012

The importance of pre-nuptial agreements for high profile couples can be demonstrated by the recent developments in Mel Gibson’s divorce from Robyn Moore. The couple had separated after approximately 28 years of marriage and their divorce became final at the very end of 2011. Having gotten married when Gibson’s career was just taking off, they apparently did not see the need to have a pre-nuptial agreement. As a result Robyn Moore was awarded half of Gibson’s fortune, estimated at $800 million, and, according to The Huffington Post, this also includes a large portion of Gibson’s retirement benefits.

While it is easy to understand why two high-profile individuals would want to protect their individual fortunes when deciding to marry, many have a hard time understanding why normal couples choose to create a pre-nuptial agreement. Many view prenups as marriage killers. Some people believe that, by going into the marriage preparing for the end of it, couples create a self-fulfilling prophecy for their marriage. This may have been how Gibson and Moore felt before Gibson became such a prominent celebrity.

While the above view of pre-nuptial agreements is common, it is not necessarily true. A pre-nuptial agreement does not doom marriages, but makes sure you and your spouse are on the same page going into the marriage. A prenup can include specifics regarding almost any issue so long as it is not criminal, does not negatively impact public policy, or does not affect a child’s right to support. A pre-nuptial agreement protects each spouse in the event of a divorce, though not many people view it that way before they sit down with an attorney to understand how it protects both parties and not just the “monied” spouse. It is a contract that ensures the wishes of each spouse be followed in the case of any life-altering event, including the death of one spouse.

If you are planning on getting married in Illinois and would like to obtain more information regarding pre-nuptial agreements, contact the Chicago pre-nuptial agreement lawyers at Nottage and Ward today for a consultation at (312) 332-2915. We can help you understand your legal rights and options.

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