What are the Pros and Cons of Prenuptial Agreement?

Last Updated on Feb 4th, 2016 | By | Category: Marriage Counseling

What are the Pros and Cons of Prenup?

Getting married is one of the sweetest that can happen to us, we all dream about it but we can never prepare enough for it. Marriage no matter how hard we intend to work on it can be unpredictable, it can turn out in many ways, that’s why it necessary to take a precaution before entering into marriage so that you will at least be able to make an informed guess in case of unforeseen circumstances. Just as a driver needs seat belt in case of car accidents, couples need prenup in case of marriage not working out.  A driver does not put seat belt because he is sure that accident will occur; he is just protecting himself just in case. That’s exactly the case with a prenup.



What is a Prenup?

A Prenup, formerly known as prenuptial agreement is a legal agreement created by a couple before being married. It offers many advantages to the couple as well as agree upon the predetermined rights and distribution of assets if they get divorced. Same type of agreement, called a postnuptial agreement is signed if the couple are already married. Some domestic partners can have a cohabitation agreement as well.

Prenuptial agreement also known as ante-nuptial agreement and commonly abbreviated as “prenup” is a marriage agreement between two adults who are about to get married or simply a legal contract entered into before marriage. The content of this agreement varies but mainly consists of terms on how the properties or assets and future earnings will be managed and handled in the marriage and division of properties or spousal and child support if eventually divorce or death takes place in future. This mostly occur if substantial assets, inheritances, large incomes or an experience from a previous spouse without a stated prenup after marriage or infidelity in a previous marriage, spousal abuse or neglect is involved just as a means of securing their possessions.

Why Do You Need a Prenup?

The reason why most couples require prenup is a clear case of unforeseen circumstances in marriage. Things can change along the line and the only thing constant in life is change, so that is why it is important for spouses to consider a prenup before their union. This will even lessen your legal bills too because prenup costs are much less than the divorce attorney. Just to be on a safe side, a prenup is necessary before marriage to avoid much loses in the marriage and if eventually the marriage is dissolved later, you may have just heartbreak to worry about.

Pros and Cos of Prenup

Everything in life that has an advantage equally has a disadvantage and prenup is not an exception. Here, we discuss some pros (advantages) and cons (disadvantages) of a prenup.

  • Advantages Of Prenup

  1. To maintain your financial stability: This is the major reason people go for prenuptial agreement. Without ante-nuptial contract, you and your spouse have equal right to your assets, properties and event debts, according to the law, regardless of how hard you worked for it.

 

  1. To keep inheritable assets and properties for your children: Many families have the interest of their children at heart and would wish to keep money, asset and property for them even after divorcing but in the case of spouse with kids outside marriage other than the ones they have with their partner, a prenup can help you stop your spouse from taking out everything you worked for his/her other children.When two people marry each other, and each of them has important assets, a prenup might be advantageous in keeping those assets divided, if the divorce or legal separation takes place. Couples who have kids from past marriages might likewise want to use a prenup, so that they can protect assets for their kids. In Hollywood, as well as among the wealthy rich people, these agreements are very common.
  1. To earn your Spouse Support: If you have the feeling that your partner does not provide or give you support financial as he/she ought to do, prenuptial agreement can create basis for the support you seek for.
  1. To reduce marital conflict due to mismanagement of some substantial possessions: if you have a prenuptial agreement with your spouse, the possibly of having arguments, misunderstandings and quarrel with your spouse over some issues will reduce because a legal contract has been enforced by a family law court.
  • Disadvantage Of Prenup

  1. The content and validity of the prenup is subjected to the decision of the judge at the family law court. You may want to state in the context some personal interests which are not reasonable to the judge and decides to rule them out.
  1. You may be left with little share of your possession to take care of yourself after divorce which will definitely affect your standard of living and lifestyle.
  1. Prenuptial agreement can bring in doubts in your marriage; this means that you do not believe you have a life partner and limiting your marriage which is meant to be a life time affair to the level of a contract. And since prenup is only useful for divorce, spouse may grow selfish and act towards breaking the marriage.

 

  1. This increases the pre-wedding expenses: You will have to spent reasonable amount of money to get an unbiased lawyer to preview the prenuptial agreement template before signing it.

Sunset Clause

A prenup usually has a sunset clause, which means that the agreement becomes invalid after a specific determined time period, or after they had a child. These types of clauses differ from state to state. Keep in mind that if the sunset clause is overlooked, the prenup agreement is void. Some people then create a postnup to modify the terms of their agreement.

Requirements

In the states, prenup must meet 5 necessities to be binding and they all must be written, as oral prenuptial agreements are not permitted. The signing of the prenup must be voluntary on the part of both parties (couple), as well as need to occur before a notary. It is invalid if one of the partner is unable to reveal something crucial, and marries under incorrect pretenses. Finally, the prenup can’t be ethically or morally unconscionable. All these points are actually advantages of a prenuptial agreements.

Religious Point of View



Some religions and a few people find the prenup morally repugnant; An agreement that incorporates the possibility of divorce. However, prenuptial agreements are not designed to separate the couple, they are important as well as necessary for a couple’s happy married life. Churches do not ban prenups, nevertheless, they look down upon them. A prenup does not make any sense to the church teaching because a marriage is considered a union of two people, a lifetime binding sacrament and commitment. It is a disadvantage for a few people, especially those who are roman catholic, as their church doesn’t support such agreements.

How to Convince Fiancé to Sign a Premarital Agreement?

Many spouses get married with the hope of lasting with the partner a life time but it takes a matured mind with human understanding to consider or be convinced on signing the prenup. The easiest way to convince your fiancé to sign a prenup is by making it clear that it is to protect the both of you without showing any selfish interest and her to understand that it is a “just in case” plan. Try mentioning it earlier in your relationship, especially before getting engaged. Try to convince her by answering all questions that may come up during discussion, tell her to get a legal advice to assist explain the benefits and risks better, present a prenuptial agreement template if possible. Let her know how much you love her and make her see that having a prenup prevents cheating in marriage. Ensure you tell her how it can protect the interest of the children too putting emotions aside, occurring mostly importantly divorce.

How to Write a Prenuptial Agreement? Can I Get a Prenup?

Many people find it beneficial to create or draft a prenuptial agreement before getting married, usually to protect their assets. It is beneficial to solve issues like asset distribution; however,  this type of contract addresses many other issues. People might likewise create a prenuptial agreement with a specific end goal to waive the right to divorce settlement (alimony). Prenup standards are different around the globe, with a few areas not acknowledging the documents’s legitimacy and others using matrimonial programs to settle prenuptial concerns. Even if you draft as well as notarize a prenup, it might be recognized but not authorized or enforced because enforcement can only occur in the presence of a legal official, mainly a judge.

Firstly, discuss with your future spouse to disclose current assets, to develop future financial plans, to decide on provisions for extended family and how properties and current financial assets will be managed in marriage. Then make out plans on how properties and assets will be distributed in the case of divorce.

Then, put the agreement into writing by titling and stating firstly that they are both entering willingly into the agreement. State the intent of the marriage and specify special terms or conditions used in the document. State the current assets possessed by each of them and explain how income will be controlled or managed in the marriage and how properties will be distributed after marriage. The prenuptial agreement is meant to address only financial issues, try not to bring in some items outside this context to avoid being ignored by the court.

Finally, the both party should have proper disclosure of all their asset, liabilities and income to each other and provide specific and adequate period of time for their review. The both parties should have the full knowledge of the benefits and risk of signing the prenup agreement and are encouraged to obtain legal advice before signing the document.

In the states, a valid prenup must meet some basic guidelines; both the partners as well as the other involved parties should be aware of the legal agreement, and must enter into it. Both parties can individually create a list of debts, assets, career goals, expectations from each other, and property attainment in order to explain all details; this would be the bulk of a prenup.  The affected parties need to be present amid the creation as well as the execution of the prenup. A prenup is valid when it is in written form as well as signed by both parties before a notary public.

A prenup agreement can’t be signed right after it is presented; it takes time, at least a week to get it signed. This helps people to review the document as well as to ensure the fair participation of everyone involved. Legal experts likewise suggest negotiating a prenuptial agreement months before presenting it, to completely understand as well as resolve all pertinent issues. That is why, advice of a prenup lawyer or a legal counsel is recommended; however, it is not always needed. A prenup lawyer can create the prenuptial agreement and outline marriage and divorce conditions in an effective manner.

Do I Need An Attorney? What Does a Prenup Lawyer Do?

Prenuptial agreements are enforced by the judges at the law court and people who seek for a prenup are both represented by lawyers. It is rare for a couple to have their prenup ready without a lawyer, so it is important to hire a lawyer to prepare the prenup agreement. Find lawyer who you are both free and comfortable with, a lawyer you both trust.

The duties of a lawyer usually incorporate negotiations between the couple before their marriage. These contracts describe conditions of divorce and marriage. Usually, the reason of a prenup is to protect the assets and properties of both parties against settlement or property divisions that would occur in the event of legal separation or divorce. Many people are unaware of prenuptial agreement; however, matrimonial agreements have been used for many years to secure resources as well as to protect wealth and assets.

It is possible to create a marriage contract on your own, without a lawyer, but you must have detailed knowledge as well as understanding of matrimonial law. Using a prenuptial lawyer is strongly recommended as you cannot become familiar with these laws in a short period of time; it is almost impractical to create a prenup on your own. The lawyer is usually an expert on these matters and can offer wise advice regarding such matters.

Bottom Line

Contingent on the kind of agreement, some might be contested amid a separation. Changing conditions might make for different proportion of child or spousal support if a marriage ends. Most legal advisors who have great expertise in these agreements try to make airtight prenuptial agreements to protect as well as secure their clients. In any case, numerous petulant separates likewise incorporate difficulties of prenuptial understandings. Having said that, a lot of contentious divorces also incorporate difficulties of prenuptial agreements. However, a prenuptial agreement makes a very good economic sense.

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3 Comments to “What are the Pros and Cons of Prenuptial Agreement?”

  1. Britanica says:

    I know in some cases, this is something you’d want but I still don’t feel doing this is being respectable of marriage. Like to me, this just allows the man or woman more freedom to screw over the other person by cheating. I am old fashioned. If you marry someone, you marry them for life. Good times or bad times. If you marry your best friend, you will have no worries.

  2. Auki says:

    Like Britanica – I fear I am too old fashioned, or perhaps too naive to agree with the concept of a Prenup. Look I get that in this world of litigious individuals the actual concept of marriage has now changed, but what a sad state we humans are in when the prenup is to be treated as a ‘just in case’ to protect us against ‘unforeseen circumstances in marriage’ – Admittedly I’m not up with the times, have they changed the vows from ‘for better or worse’ to ‘forsaking all but the prenup?’

    My honest opinion is “YES” – in this day and age a prenup is probably best to protect an individual from the apparent army of spiteful people wanting to take advantage of your financial positions after a failed ‘coupling’ and send you spiralling in to ruin, but please take a moment to reflect on what a distasteful disgusting concept we have had to come up with to defend against …. marriage?

  3. Jamie says:

    I’m a newly wed. So I’m still all swoony and biased I’m sure but I hate the fact that a prenup just sets the idea that divorce is imminent. Its like you’re forcing yourself to act selfishly and protect your own interests before you marriage has even started. I just doesn’t sound like the best foundation to start of life partnership with someone . If you’re that concerned about divorce lawyers and losing your property then perhaps you should reconsider marriage in the first place. I get the purpose, but I’m totally against it. That being said, I feel like a cohabitation version of a “pre-nup” is much more useful. I have friends who have purchased houses with significant others that have been hesitant about getting married. I think that’s the kind of situation that would more befit from this type of agreement.

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