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Should gay couples in Virginia sign prenuptial agreements?

In a recent hearing, a Virginia court has overturned state law and lifted the ban on gay marriages, creating a major legal victory for the LGBT community. The court further ruled that the state must respect same-sex marriages being carried out legally in other states. If this ruling survives Virginia Supreme Court review, same-sex couples in the state will finally be on the same footing as their heterosexual counterparts.

Such a ruling would also mean that homosexual married couples would be subject to the same divorce issues as heterosexual couples, including alimony, spousal support and division of marital property.

For these reasons, same-sex couples might be wise to opt for prenuptial agreements similar to those signed by heterosexual couples. Some people may view prenuptial agreements as "romance killers," but they are sensible given that the current divorce rate in the United States is estimated at 50 percent of marriages, with states such as California witnessing a divorce rate of 60 percent.

A prenuptial agreement can help resolve a number of issues that arise when a couple decides to separate. The agreements are even more important if a person is about to enter a second, third or even fourth marriage. The typical agreement addresses division of property and spousal support, along with many other issues that can arise in a divorce.

One main benefit of a prenuptial agreement is that it gives a couple the opportunity to make decisions about divorce-related matters when they are still happily married and willing to work together in a peaceful fashion.

Source: Liberty Voice, "Same Sex Couples Need Prenuptial Agreements Too," Jim McCullaugh, Feb. 16, 2014

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