Nothing can kill a romantic evening faster than “Honey, will you ….sign a prenup?” It may not be sexy, but, it may need to be a part of wedding planning just like the cake and honeymoon.
What is a Pre-Nuptial Agreement (or prenup)? A prenup, or pre-marital agreement is a contract between two people about to marry. It spells out how the assets and debts of each person individually and of the marriage will be divided upon separation, divorce or death. Should you have a prenup? What should you do if presented with a prenup?
When do you need a prenup?
But I’m not rich…. You don’t need to be rich to need a premarital agreement. If you have worked hard and scrimped to save $30,000 on your own, you may need to guard that if you get married more than someone who has millions. If your intended has $30,000 in student loans, you may want to keep the debt collectors away from your assets.
Don’t wait until the last minute to present the prenup to your intended. They will need plenty of time to look it over, and to have an attorney look at it as well if you don’t want to have a court set aside your wishes.
You should consider having a prenup if you –
- have assets such as a home, stock or retirement funds
- own all or part of a business
- may be receiving an inheritance
- have children and/or grandchildren from a previous marriage
- or your intended has more wealth than the other
- or your intended will be paying to support the other through college or professional training
- have elderly parents or children with special needs to be taken care of
- or your intended have outstanding debt, such as college loans
- have or are pursuing a degree or license in a potentially lucrative profession
- can see a large increase in your income in your future
What do you do when presented with a prenup?
Don’t sign it until you’ve had a chance to discuss it with an attorney. It is a legal document with lasting effects. You can loose your rights with no legal recourse.