Indeed, there’s no such thing as a perfect marriage. No matter how much two people are in love with one another, their union is bound to be tested by disagreements and trials. The problem is many couples are calling it quits and divorcing. Statistics show about 50% of marriages in America end up in divorce. Worse, the rate rises when it comes to second marriages. It’s for this reason that preparing for such an eventuality is wise.
One of the most useful, not to mention a popular way to ensure a smooth transition from married life back to the single life is the prenup, short for a prenuptial agreement. In essence, a prenup is a contract, a binding one to be exact. In the document, the soon-to-be couple agrees on their legal rights once they settle down. Most importantly, it delineates what will happen should the marriage be dissolved as in a divorce or in the case of death. In effect, the prenup supersedes the common laws that govern marriage.
The million-dollar question is of course, whether you should get one. Is it advisable to do so? To ease your burden, we’re giving you a lowdown on both sides of the fence.
Advantage of Having a Prenup
It’s true. Talking about a prenup can be awkward. It can, in a sense, make you feel guilty. Who would want to talk about separation if you’re just about to tie the knot as one? It can surely get to your nerves. But, to a large degree, it can be helpful.
A prenup protects you. One of the most obvious ways is your assets and properties. Indeed, a prenup can be a smart way to plan your estate. In this regard, getting your trusted estate planning attorney to draft your prenup is wise. The prenup document will put things in line. So, if something happens to you or if you and your spouse separate, what properties will go to whom is already settled.
Think about it. It’s best to go through this when you and your partner are on good terms. You’re thinking rationally and not emotionally. Know that a divorce can be messy. More often than not, people who used to be madly in love with each other are now at each other’s throats.
A quick look at how famous actor Johnny Depp is going through tough times with his divorce is telling. Though not all divorces end up bitterly, many do. Being able to decide on which properties and which assets go to who early on in the union is, therefore, wise.
A prenup is also beneficial for the children in the marriage. It can protect their welfare and ensure they are not taken advantage of should bad things materialize.
Moreover, a prenup can protect your business if you have one. It means you can protect yourself from malicious claims by your significant other should you separate. And that also goes true for your debts. The prenup can establish how the responsibility for possible debts should be shouldered by both parties.
Take note that what the prenup entails is all up to you. So you can agree beforehand on how things should be managed. Therefore, each party should feel free to include specific provisions that are instrumental in the marriage.
Like any contract, a prenup has its drawbacks too. For one, it can breed distrust. By entertaining the possibility of a divorce, issues of trust could surface. Indeed, divvying up the properties early on in the marriage can breed negative feelings towards each other.
As aforementioned, discussing a prenup can is an awkward process. As a lengthy back-and-forth, it can even spoil the chances of a union. So you need to be careful about your approach. For one, you can be misconstrued by your partner and the people around you as not being totally committed to the marriage.
Small wonder some experts consider prenups as a danger to one’s marital health. It’s ironic actually. When a prenup is drafted, the marriage seems centered on financial matters, and less on building a healthy union.
Understand that a prenup is not a one-shoe-fits-all solution. There are important things that a prenup cannot dictate. Top of that list is child support and child custody. These two will have to be decided in other legal proceedings.
If you’re mulling over a prenup, consider some reasons you should not get one.
In the end, it’s really your choice. There are tons of ways to make a marriage work. What’s important is you don’t decide on something haphazardly. With due diligence, you should end up with your peace of mind intact.