Most of us are familiar with prenuptial agreements, but more and more couples these days are entering into postnuptial agreements.

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Postnups are made between couples who are already married, and are designed to protect assets and debts acquired during the marriage in anticipation of future troubles like separation, divorce or even death.

"Sometimes, postnups are made in an effort to revisit or amend an already existing prenuptial agreement," said Bari Weinberger, managing partner and owner of Weinberger Law Group. "It could be to protect a recently received inheritance by one party; it might be that they're getting some pressure from a family member in an already existing family business."

In a recent survey of divorce lawyers by the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, 51 percent saw an increase in postnups and 46 percent saw no change from 2009 to 2012.

Why are postnups on the rise?

"I believe that we're seeing more couples enter into them because of the state of the economy," Weinberger said. "I think people are trying to avoid divorce because it's very expensive, so people are trying to remain intact in their marital unit, but oftentimes are a little nervous about doing that. So, one way to maintain the integrity of their finances while also keeping some future financial security is to create the postnuptial agreements."

Couples who enter into a postnuptial agreement must have full financial disclosure by both parties, and they have to have independent representation.

"They also have to be free of coercion or duress," Weinberger said. "There's a lot of legal language in the agreement that says it's fair and reasonable. The one issue that cannot be addressed in a postnup is child custody, but alimony can be discussed in the event that a couple gets divorced down the road."

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