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Being married 10 years has added benefit

Texas couples who have been married nearly a decade may have incentive to stay until that pivotal 10-year mark. This concept was recently demonstrated in the case of Ben Affleck and Jennifer Garner.

Garner initiated the high-asset divorce one day after the 10th anniversary of the couple's wedding. News outlets have not been able to determine whether the couple had a prenuptial agreement. This is important because some prenuptial agreements contain different and more favorable provisions for the lower-earning spouse. For example, the prenuptial agreement may contain a monetary benefit that applies after the 10th anniversary. Other prenuptial agreements give a spouse more money for each additional year of marriage. In addition to prenuptial agreements, other incentives for reaching the 10-year mark are being able to qualify for spousal benefits for Social Security and courts in some states being more likely to provide a greater amount of spousal support in what they perceived as a long marriage.

In 2013, a survey conducted by divorce attorneys found that there had been a significant increase in requests for prenuptial agreements during the last few years. In negotiating a prenuptial agreement, it is vital that each partner know about the assets and debts of the other. Hiding assets is one reason why such an agreement may be invalidated by a court. Other prenuptial agreements do not hold up because they are found to be a product of coercion, entered into at the last minutes before a wedding.

Individuals who would like to protect their assets before getting married may consider getting a prenuptial agreement. It takes time to gather the necessary documents for due diligence. Additionally, each party should represented by separate legal counsel to ensure that his or her individual rights are protected.

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Bruce Turner

In addition to his law degree, Bruce Turner has a master's degree in tax law and is Board Certified in Commercial Real Estate Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization.

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Bruce Turner with Bennett, Weston LaJone & Turner, P.C.

Attorney Bruce Turner is located in Dallas and represents people and businesses throughout DFW and the Metroplex, including Denton, Carrollton, Lewisville, Flower Mound, Farmers Branch, Irving, Las Colinas, Corinth, Highland Village, The Colony, Plano, Frisco, Allen, McKinney, Mesquite, Grand Prairie, Garland and Grapevine as well as Collin County, Denton County and Dallas County in Texas.

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