While every person who is contemplating marriage hopes the marriage will last forever, the reality is that nearly half of all marriages end in divorce. Should that happen in your particular case, you want to ensure your financial future is protected even if you feel discussing such things takes away from the romance of your relationship.
Insure your future
While it can seem as though preparing a prenuptial agreement is the same as assuming the relationship will end, think of it more as a form of insurance. You don’t expect your home to burn down or to be involved in a car crash, yet you carry insurance “just in case,” because you don’t want to end up financially devastated should one of those events occur. A prenuptial agreement is much the same — while you hope you will never need it, if you do you will be glad you had the foresight to have this document prepared.
On the flip side, there can be an emotional cost to preparing a prenuptial agreement. Nearly ten percent of those who start out preparing a prenuptial agreement change their minds about the marriage altogether. A prenup is basically a legal agreement signed by you and your future husband or wife that deals with straightforward financial and legal issues in the event of divorce or death. What will be done with assets such as the home, stocks, bonds and bank accounts will be detailed and, in some cases, custody arrangements, alimony and even who will get the family pet may be part of the prenuptial agreement.
Adding in outlandish demands however can make the prenuptial agreement both expensive as well as legally questionable. Middle aged-couples who have children from prior marriages or considerable assets they have spent a large portion of their lifetime accruing may benefit the most from a prenuptial agreement as it can put everyone’s mind at ease regarding the financial aspects of the marriage. Younger couples who are giving up a job, an apartment or a certain way of life in order to marry may enter into a prenuptial agreement to ensure they have some stability should the marriage dissolve.
If you are considering marriage and are wondering whether you should have a prenuptial agreement, a knowledgeable family law attorney can assist you in making that determination. Thinking about a prenuptial agreement at such a happy time can be difficult for most engaged couples. However, a prenuptial agreement could be a form of insurance you will be grateful for at some point in the future.