While there is never a shortage of advice for Texas spouses to be financially prepared if they are considering divorce, it is often suggested that steps should be taken by each spouse to protect themselves even if they are not considering a divorce. Prenuptial agreements are said to be essential tools for protecting both parties in a divorce. However, circumstances can change significantly during the years of marriage, and additional protection may be required.
An example of changing dynamics is when one spouse takes on the role of full-time caregiver of the children. That may mean giving up a well-paid job, and that parent may be at a professional level that he or she may never be able to regain. Although the loss of one spouse's income will impact the family's finances, the parent giving up a career will take the brunt of the sacrifice.
In addition to giving up the security of a monthly income, retirement and health benefits and contact with professional colleagues may be lost, and the list of sacrifices just goes on. This may be the time to take additional measures to protect the spouse whose financial security will now be compromised. Even if the new arrangement has no adverse impact on the marriage, one never knows what the future holds.
Such arrangements may not be anticipated when prenuptial agreements are drafted. Fortunately, Texas laws allow married couples to address these issues in postnuptial agreements. With the guidance of an experienced divorce attorney, an agreement can be drafted to address spousal support that will be appropriate to secure financial stability for the spouse who gave up a career to take care of the household in the event a divorce does occur.
Source: Forbes, "The Financial Wellness Gender Gap: Concerning For All Women, Dangerous For Women Divorcing In 2016", Jeff Landers, Jan. 11, 2016