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Why Illinois stay-at-home parents should consider a 'postnup'

It goes without saying that having a child is one of the most life-changing events that a person can experience. New children can require parents to make numerous adjustments in their lives - not the least of which will involve career decisions. While an increasing number of men are staying home to care for young children, the majority of stay-at-home parents still tend to be women. Either way, the parent who gives up or takes time out from a career to care for a child must be aware of the financial consequences that the decision could have on the marriage.

If a stay-at-home mom is going to be entirely financially dependent on her husband, it could change how decisions are made regarding saving, investing and spending. It could also impact the ways in which spouses value each other's commitments outside of the home. An important point to remember is that disagreements over finances are one of the prevailing causes of divorce.

While breaking up might be the last thing on the minds of a married couple who just had a child, the reality is that around 50 percent of marriages in America end in divorce. This means that it's important to consider how your finances would look if you were ever to split up with your spouse - even if it seems like it could never happen. For the stay-at-home mom, a divorce could lead to an arguably unfair financial disadvantage.

Consider the fact that a woman will typically leave the workforce during the years in which she may also have been making a lot of money at the job she gave up. She may have also missed out on networking and promotion opportunities that could have led to even more earnings. If a divorce were to occur, not only would the woman have missed out on years of wages, but she'd also be facing a challenging job search after being out of the workplace for a long time.

For these reasons, stay-at-home moms in Illinois may wish to consider getting a postnuptial agreement. These documents provide a way for already-married mothers to establish property division and marital asset provisions in the event of a divorce. Even though it may seem unromantic, it can be argued that a stay-at-home mom is technically entering a new job for which financial security should be established.

Source: forbes.com, "Why You Need A Postnup And Other Points To Consider Before Leaving Your Paid Job To Be A Stay-At-Home Mom" Jeff Landers, Jan. 22, 2014

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