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Learn how to protect your personal assets

When you get married, the things you have and the things your new spouse has are likely to merge. This isn't always a huge deal; however, you must ensure that you are taking the steps necessary to protect family heirlooms and other items that you don't want to be viewed as marital property.

Ideally, you will have a prenuptial agreement in place before you walk down the aisle. If you don't have one, consider a postnuptial agreement. Even without that, you can still take steps to protect yourself and your assets.

One important thing you must do is to keep the items separated from martial items. Keep a record of the items that you had coming into the marriage that you don't want to part with. Keep these items away from marital assets. This means that if your family member left you a monetary inheritance, you shouldn't put it in the joint financial accounts.

Another thing to do is to make sure that you don't use separate property to pay for marital debt. This could blur the line that is drawn between the separate property and the marital property.

You must be prepared to deal with issues that might come up along the way. If you divorce, you will need to show that you did keep the separate property separate. This is when a good prenuptial agreement would come into the picture. If you have any questions about how you can protect your assets, you should make sure you get those answered right away so that you can head off any potential problems quickly.

Source: FindLaw, "Managing Marital Property - Do's and Don'ts," accessed April 07, 2017

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