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Matrimonial and Family Law Blog

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

With No Prenup, Billion Dollar Macklowe Divorce Turns into Heated Battle How important is a prenuptial agreement?

The divorce between New York real estate mogul Harry Macklowe and his wife Linda has become increasingly contentious as the couple battles over the billions of dollars at stake.  Harry and Linda Macklowe wed 57 years ago.  They did not sign a prenuptial agreement.  Earlier this year, Harry Macklowe reportedly filed for divorce from his wife amidst rumors that he was dating another woman.  Now, the couple is expected to duel it out to receive their share of the substantial property and wealth at stake, which includes over $1 billion in art alone.

Why You Should Consider a Prenuptial Agreement

A prenuptial or matrimonial agreement is an agreement between two people that sets out the financial consequences of divorce.  While many individuals in love are loath to bring up the topic of a prenup, these agreements can save you from much dissension and heartache down the road. 

Signing a prenuptial agreement is particularly important in the following circumstances:

  1. You are substantially wealthier than your partner:  A prenuptial agreement can protect your finances in the event of a divorce. 
  2. You out-earn your partner:  You may be able to limit the amount of alimony that is payable to your partner using a prenup.
  3. Your partner has debt:  If your partner is burdened with debt, a prenuptial agreement can help to ensure you are not responsible for these debts if the marriage ends. 
  4. You own a business:  Without a prenuptial agreement, your spouse could end up owning a percentage of your company if the marriage ends.  This could negatively impact your finances and other business partners.
  5. You earn far less than your partner:  A prenup can also protect a spouse that earns less by including language that allows for significant alimony or a greater division of property towards the under-earning spouse.
  6. You plan to quit your job and raise children:  Leaving your job can affect your wealth and income.  A prenuptial agreement can ensure the financial burden of having you stay home with the children is shared equally.

The matrimonial attorneys at Gassman Baiamonte Gruner, P.C. work with couples to develop a fair matrimonial agreement that clarifies each party’s rights in the event of a divorce.  Call our New York firm today at (516) 228-9181. 


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