What is a prenuptial agreement?
Commonly known as a “prenup,” you have most likely heard about this in the entertainment news when it comes to the engagement of the rich and the famous. It is a private contract that will keep the assets of both parties—those that they have earned or owned prior to the marriage, be kept under their name should a divorce occur.
The question is, are celebrities the only ones who should be considering this life-altering contract? Or is it only for rich couples?
The answer is NO! In fact, if you are someone who has been saving for quite some time now, or if you are simply someone who has property in your name, you’re most eligible to consider a prenup! In fact, there are more reasons why a prenuptial agreement is something worth looking into if you’re planning to get married.
What are the benefits of getting a prenup?
There’s a misconception that prenup is contradictory of the idea of marriage itself, but the truth is, a prenup is financial for both parties, for the whole family, whatever should happen. A prenup is beneficial not only to people who are going to divorce, but also to protect the spouse or children during a wife or husband’s unexpected death. Remarriages also benefit from a prenup. Below are a few more prenup perks that will shed the light on this controversial contract:
1. It defines the financial responsibility and financial rights of both parties even before the marriage begins. A lot of couples fight and eventually separate over money issues, and a prenup will help put those financial roles into light so both of you can enter the marriage with open eyes and clear expectations.
2. It protects children from previous marriages in case something happens to you. You will be able to secure their finances and inheritance with a prenup agreement and avoid those disastrous telenovela plots.
3. You can keep your inheritance, heirlooms, or anything that belongs to your family (in case you’re only one of the few heirs) under your name when you separate.
4. You can protect each other from debt accrued prior to marriage. It’s not only property that you can amass when you don’t have a prenup, but you can get your spouse’s doubt too! Whether you are the one with the debt or not, debt is something you wouldn’t want to share in a marriage, especially if it was accumulated before you even got together. A prenup will definitely limit these liabilities.
5. It’s possible to get alimony. For instance, at the beginning of your marriage before deciding to separate, you and your spouse have decided that you shall quit your job to focus on raising the children. Knowing that this would have a major impact on the family’s monthly income and your personal finances, a prenup would justify a regular allowance from your partner to make up for the time lost when you could have been working.
However, it is important to note that a prenup is only concerned with the couple’s financial issues. Any other dispute—such as child custody rights, is not included in the prenup’s contract. Hence, in order to make the most out of the contract, it’s best to do a full disclosure of your assets before signing the prenup.
Now that you think about it, why not a prenup?
A prenup is a very practical thing to do in a marriage. So instead of thinking that a prenup seems like a foreshadowing of an impending divorce, or that your potential spouse is simply too selfish to even consider this, think instead that a prenup is being upfront and honest to the other party. Be sure to discuss this matter seriously with your fiancé before getting hitched. This not only proves that you want to keep an honest financial relationship with your spouse but it is also to assert your control over your financial matters, instead of letting the state call the shots in what to do about your money and assets.
What are the downsides to getting a prenuptial agreement?
The key here is to tell your spouse that you’re planning to get a prenup as soon as possible. It helps if you can ease your significant other into the benefits of a prenup, and it is in no way expecting that a divorce will happen. And if it would happen anyway, both of you are worry free knowing that division of assets are already taken care of. However, as much as there plus sides to getting a prenup, there are also downside being:
1. It is not advisable for young married couples who are earning almost the same amount to get a prenup.
2. Living beyond your means will haunt you; if you’re the spouse who spent more than what he or she earned, you might get penalized for it during court proceedings.
3. There is that probability of divorce and you might blame the prenup for planting the idea in your head.
4. Things can still get predictable. Divorce can still get messy, because the chances of fighting over something is still a big possibility.
Discuss your money matters with your fiancé now! If he or she is hesitating, it’s good to find out the reason for his or her hesitation. Refusing to deal with financial matters early on is a very alarming warning sign! What if your special someone or worse –what if you have debt you need to settle before getting married?
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