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What happens if I don’t have a prenup?

A prenup (which is short for “prenuptial contract”) is simply a marriage contract documenting the negotiated agreement between you and your soon-to-be spouse. It covers how you and your spouse have agreed to address and allocate various rights and duties you may have against each other, if you happen to split up in the future. It can cover important topics such as spousal support, and how you agree to have your assets divided.

If you do not have a prenup, then those rights and duties are governed by federal and provincial Family legislation – automatically. Whether or not you like or agree with the outcome, the law will apply in a straightforward manner with no opportunity to circumvent it.

Needless to say, creating a prenup is a good idea. On the front-end of your relationship, it forces you to give early, focused thought to how you want to deal with your assets and family-related rights. And if you and your spouse do part ways, it allows you to customize or even avoid undesired outcomes that might otherwise arise under the legislation.

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