Couples in Illinois who are interested in setting up prenuptial agreements should be prepared to conduct a thorough review of current and future financial matters. According to the American Bar Association, the process for creating a premarital contract should start with a full review of current assets such as retirement accounts or business assets as well as debts. This gives people a place from which to work.
Once that has been done, decisions should be made that identify if any separate property will remain as non-marital property or if it will all be comingled and put into the marital estate. This can be in the form of a home originally purchased by one person but then deeded into both partners' names or money from one person used to fund the education of the other with no required repayment.
From there, couples must identify how they will handle their day-to-day finances and long-term savings. Some couples plan to share all income and assets equally while others set up some joint accounts but still retain some separate accounts and responsibilities. For couples who plan to have one spouse quit work in order to be a stay-at-home parent, alimony structure can be discussed if a divorce later takes place.
Forbes points out that this process must include full disclosure by both partners in order for the agreement to be legally valid. Similarly, either partner must be forced to sign a contract under duress or against their wishes. Provisions must be reasonable and not heavily favor one person over the other.