Getting a prenuptial agreement - commonly called a prenup - isn't entirely void of romance and love like many people think. While it can be awkward to bring up during your engagement, it's wise to do so. Nobody goes into marriage planning on divorce, and yet 40 to 50 percent of marriages end in divorce. You can save yourself some headaches, anxiety, and money down the road if you go ahead and get your prenuptial agreement taken care of. It'll also help you and your significant other start effectively having hard conversations about finances and other topics. Ultimately, it's up to you and your partner if a prenup is right for you.
However, there are certain situations when we at O'Keefe Family Law would highly recommend getting a prenup to protect your assets.
- It's not your first marriage. Divorce rates are significantly higher among people who have been married before. Don't set yourself up for failure, but make sure to prepare.
- You have children from a previous relationship. Your prenup can help provide protection regarding child custody.
- You are bringing significant assets into the marriage. This is especially important when one partner is marrying someone who doesn't.
- You are a business owner. A prenup can ensure the your business stays your responsibility after divorce.
A prenuptial agreement isn't something you and your partner should just jot down on a spare piece of paper though. An experienced family law attorney can help you through the situation if you're inexperienced with it. Bobbie O'Keefe can make sure the prenup's agreements meet the legal requirements, and she can even help execute it if the day comes. Doing this will help smooth out the legal division of assets. Whether the prenup is taken into account during your potential divorce or during your or your partner's potential death, it'll help immensely in saving time and stress during divorce proceedings or the processing of a will.
If you want to get a prenup but you're not entirely sure what to include, Bobbie can also help you. She'll walk you through the process and help you and your significant other agree on who would receive what, what you can or can't post on social media, or even who gets the dog in the event of divorce.
Ideally, the best time to get a prenuptial agreement is some time during your engagement. Of course, we wouldn't recommend it for right before your special day. Do it at a time that works for both of you and you're both comfortable discussing it. Remember, its purpose is to alleviate stress later on if a problem arises; remembering this will help you discuss your prenup rationally. If you didn't get a prenup before marriage but would still like some sort of agreement between the two of you in case unplanned divorce or death does occur, it's still possible; you get something called a postnuptial agreement.
By working with an experienced attorney - like Bobbie - and setting up a prenup, you'll know what to if the day comes.