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Sign a premarital agreement to protect your properties

 Posted on January 01, 2022 in Property Division

Illinois is an equitable division state. In divorce, Illinois courts try to split the marital property into a fair arrangement. If you have multiple properties, you may wonder how this affects the outcome of your marriage ending.

Families with multiple homes or other properties like time-shares or cabins need to understand the property division process. See below to learn more about what you stand to lose and how you might protect your assets.

How is property divided?

When dividing your estate, a judge or arbitrator considers the value of each property, the marriage length, economic contributions, finances from previous marriages, childcare expenses, the ability of each spouse to make money and a variety of other social and economic factors. However, since Illinois is a no-fault state, marital conduct does not play a role in determining asset division.

Do I have a say?

If you want to improve your chances of keeping your property, a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement is your best option. If you entered the marriage with multiple properties, it is even more imperative you sign a prenuptial. For example, if you have children from a previous marriage, you may wish to keep specific property indebted to them. According to Chapter 750 ILCS 10/7, a prenuptial is not enforceable if the other spouse proves they did not have sufficient knowledge to make the decision. Do not attempt to hide property or be deceptive with your premarital agreement, or you risk losing your assets.

Owning multiple properties makes marriage and divorce more difficult. Your best course of option is to create contingency plans that ensure you and your spouse have denoted ownership or joint ownership in the event of a divorce.

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