It’s an uncomfortable, awkward topic that no one likes to bring up. Yet, when two people are getting married (especially for a second time) the question, “Should I get a prenup?” is a smart and necessary one to ask yourself. The following is a guest post, written collaboratively by family law attorneys of The Canterbury Law Group. It offers 5 reasons why getting a prenuptial agreement makes sense.
5 Reasons Modern Couples Are Getting Prenuptial Agreements by attorneys at Canterbury Law Group
In our modern-day world, your last name doesn’t have to be “Trump” or “Kardashian” to benefit from obtaining a prenup. When prenups first became popular, they were often seen as a weapon by which wealthy spouses took advantage of less sophisticated (and less wealthy) partners, which is why many people today have an instinctively negative reaction when they hear the term “prenuptial agreement.” To make it worse, it seems like every week we are hearing about another messy divorces amongst celebrities and their high-stake prenups.
It is important to clear up some of the negativity surrounding prenuptial agreements. Whether or not your stay married forever, these legal documents can be very helpful in many financial matters. Besides protecting oneself in the event of a divorce, prenups can actually provide important advantages for both partners in a marriage. In fact, they are often used to plan for future affairs and arrange things legally in ways that are mutually beneficial to both spouses. Prenups are often used by middle class Americans, as they don’t have the luxury of gambling with finances.
Modern-day couples are obtaining prenups for five main reasons:
1. Spouses who have children from a prior marriage are often concerned about their future financial protection. A prenuptial agreement can be used to ensure your children (and your spouse) will be taken care of as you wish, if something happens to you.
2. A prenuptial agreement can protect against joint liability on individual debts. For example, if a spouse owns a small business and personally guarantees loans, a prenup can limit legal responsibility and preserve assets for both of the spouses in the marriage.
3. If one spouse co-owns a business, a clear succession plan is often necessary to obtain financing. A prenup can make running the business easier as well as clarify what happens if the business owner dies.
4. By clearly showing how assets will be titled during the marriage, a prenup can facilitate gift and estate tax planning.
5. Although laws are in place to protect inherited property at the moment, they can always be challenged or changed. Address any inherited property beforehand in a prenuptial agreement. Wouldn’t you hate to lose your grandparent’s beach home just because your spouse is entitled to half of it?
In closing, a prenuptial agreement doesn’t have to be viewed as a negative. In fact, the stability and comfort of knowing all the “what if’s” can make a new marriage stronger, as it takes so much pressure off of both partners. So, in asking yourself “Should I get a prenup?,” I’d say the answer is simple. Yes, you should get a prenup. It’s a document that can take the stress of the unknown future out of your marriage.
Canterbury Law Group, (formerly Edwards & Cherney) is dedicated to providing legal counsel at the highest level possible, and deeply committed to solving its clients’ life changing problems. The Scottsdale based firm handled cases in throughout the U.S., with an emphasis in Arizona, California, Nevada and New York. Learn more: www.CanterburyLawGroup.com