Unless you’re part of a famous Hollywood couple, the thought of asking
your fiance/fiancee for a prenuptial agreement is most likely the furthest
from your mind. Prenuptial agreements typically have a doomsday connotation
to them, so it’s hard to ask someone to sign a prenuptial agreement.
It often feels worse to be asked for one.
However, according to at least
one therapist, prenuptial agreements can be a saving point for a marriage, because they
can get the major issues that often kill marriages resolved before a problem
even begins. The most common problem, of course, is money and money management,
and prenuptial agreements can set how the couple will manage their money
while married, not just who will get what if they divorce. By discussing
finances up front, before there is an official co-mingling of funds, partners
can avoid arguments in the future, because not only have they discussed
how everything will be managed financially, but the discussion is also
already written down for future reference. This is especially important
for couples who marry later in life, after they already have achieved
financial independence, and it’s even more important with couples
who have children from previous marriages.
“Creating a prenup raises volatile issues,” the therapist said.
“But after the smoke clears, a prenup can actually bring stability
and clarity to a marriage in the long term, precisely because it does
expose the core issues of a relationship.”
She goes on to say that by forcing yourselves to openly discuss money in
this manner, it removes anything scary or uncomfortable that each partner
may have about the topic.
Prenuptial agreements sound like they set up the marriage to fail, but
in fact, they can save a marriage. Removing one of the largest obstacles
in a marriage that is the number one cause of divorce can only make a
And in the sad case that your marriage falls into the 1-out-of-every-2-marriages
statistic, at least you have a document outlining how the assets will
be divided just in case. Having that alone will save you hours in attorneys’
fees and arguing in court.
If you’d like to find out more about prenuptial agreements, and whether
one would be right for you, consult a
good family lawyer in your area.