If you are about to get married, probably “prenup” is one of the last words you’d like to hear.  It has a reputation. It’s something that only well-off people get. Or, is it?

The word has become pretty charged with negative meanings associated with it, however, if we analyze what it is for and why you should get it, you might notice it is not as bad after all. In the end, it’s a tool that will help you be protected in a complex contract like a marriage.

In the end, a tool is not good or bad and the difference comes along on how you decide to use it. 

Common Misconceptions Associated With Prenups

A Prenup Means A Lack Of Trust

Mentioning a prenup can bring up tension between you and your soon-to-be spouse. In many ways, because we associate it with a lack of trust. However, it can mean setting things in order in a loving way, preventing what someday might come.

As Attorney at law explains it:

While everyone has different motivations for getting a prenup, most do so because they want to clearly d efine their financial responsibilities in the marriage, gain clarity around inheritance issues, and keep control over their assets . Creating a legal prenup is about the couple working together honestly and openly and coming up with terms they both feel are just and fair. In fact, it is responsible to map out a plan when both parties are in love, rather than fight over the details of what to most can be a stressful and chaotic period in a divorce.

Setting things in order before getting into a marriage is not only good planning, it’s necessary and will help through the relationship and even more if a divorce occurs later. It will take off the burden and drama of setting everything in order while ending a relationship that has been important to you both for a period of your lives.

Remember that both parties can benefit from signing a prenup and that by getting a prenup will also safeguard any assets that your partner and soon to be spouse may have earned or inherited before you tie the knot. For example, if your fiancé owns a home that they inherited from their parents or grandparents, if you get a prenup written up, they will be able to include their home as an asset which they’ll get to keep, in the unfortunate case that you end up filing for divorce in the future.

Sometimes signing a prenup can actually prevent a divorce in the future as if you choose to sign a prenup, during difficult times in your marriage, you will be less likely to fight about money and assets as each individual already knows where they stand where it comes to the assets which they have accumulated before your wedding day.

It Will Be Enforced If You Get Divorced

A prenup is not something set in stone . If your marriage does end in divorce, you’ll still get the chance of deciding, depending on your state of course. As Mckinnon states:

There are also certain situations which might make the prenup invalid, for example, if one party can prove that they were forced to sign it against their will, there was no disclosure, or it was not executed within a reasonable time prior to the marriage.  Additionally, the parties can both voluntarily rescind a prenuptial agreement if they both decide to do so at any time after its execution or after the wedding.

Also keep in mind that you can file a prenuptial agreement which has an expiry date. For example, you may want to have a prenup arranged that expires after 10 years of marriage. Although you can select any time period which suits yourself and your fiancé. This may be an option if you are both willing to share half of your pooled assets with each other if your marriage goes the distance and lasts a certain amount of time.

You Must Be Rich To Get A Prenup

Another thing that we associate with prenups in general (and probably because of Hollywood), is that only rich people get a prenup before getting married. However, they are available to everyone:

Prenuptial agreements can be used to help guide the couple in all manner of personal affairs should their relationship come to an end. If they have children from a different relationship, for example, a prenup could be useful to clarify what will happen to assets if the parent of the child should die. They can also be used to define the roles and responsibilities of each individual in the marriage or even to protect against debt that one spouse has acquired.

Prenuptial agreements are reasonably priced and are well worth the investment for most couples. Think of it this way, compare the fee that you’ll have to pay in order to have a prenup drawn up, with the value of the assets which you may end up losing one day, if you don’t sign a prenup before your wedding. Depending on the assets which you have accumulated, you could stand to lose hundreds of thousands of dollars. Especially if you own a property or investments such as shares and cryptocurrencies.

Also keep in mind that in most cases getting a prenup signed is a whole lot more affordable than hosting a wedding or going through a divorce. In fact, if you do end up getting divorced, your divorce will be a whole lot quicker to process if you have a prenup on file. As it’s likely that you will be able to avoid endless legal battles which are common when individuals don’t have a prenup on file and contest all of the assets which they once shared with their spouses.

You’ll Get Divorced If You Get One

One of the negative ideas we associate with prenuptial agreements is that most couples who get one will definitely get divorced later. This is not true, it just means you like to be prepared in case anything happens. Also, it’s a good exercise in your marriage: if you feel like talking about money and assets is hard in a moment, your relationship is good and that you are feeling romantic and open, imagine how hard it will be when you don’t have those things so fresh any longer.

Contrary to popular belief if your soon to be spouse asks you about the possibility of getting a prenup, it shouldn’t raise a red flag, as there is no correlation between signing a prenup and getting divorced. In fact, signing a prenup may increase your chances of staying happily married for decades as it shows that you are both willing to be completely open and transparent.

You’ll Get To Keep The Assets You Acquired Before Your Marriage If You Don’t Get A Prenup

Many individuals don’t think that they need a prenup as they are under the impression that they won’t benefit from arranging a prenup as they believe that they will automatically get to keep any assets which they acquired before their wedding day.

However, in some instances and states, divorce judges have chosen to split all assets between both parties equally, regardless of the fact that one or both individuals may have acquired some of the assets which are being split on their own. So, if you want to ensure that your assets that you have worked hard to accumulate will be protected, it’s worth signing a prenup. While you may not foresee your marriage ending in divorce, it always pays to be safe, rather than sorry as you can’t predict what the future will bring.

Particularly if you have children from a previous marriage which has dissolved and you want to ensure that assets which were accumulated before your wedding can be passed down to these children.

Prenuptial Agreements Only Benefit Men

Many individuals falsely believe that prenuptial agreements only benefit men as in some cases although it is not fair men still earn more than women with the same qualifications and career experience. However, women can place clauses in their prenuptial agreement which will guarantee them a certain amount of money if their marriage ends in divorce, for each year that they remain married. Some couples may feel that this is a fair arrangement if the wife plans to take a lot of leave in order to take care of any future children which they may have.

Also remember, that in many cases women may enter a marriage with more assets than their fiancé. So in many cases prenuptial agreements will greatly benefit women.

A prenuptial agreement before marriage can be a way of setting things in order before you start this new chapter in your life. So, if you like to be prepared in case anything happens, don’t forget to contact your top Alabama lawyers to talk about it.

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    About The Author

    Charlotte Christian, Esq. is a family and divorce lawyer and founder of Charlotte Christian Law. Born and raised in the Yellowhammer State she still calls home, Charlotte is committed to helping those who experienced loss overcome their hardships and build a new life, stronger and more resilient than they were before. No stranger to trauma herself, including enduring the sudden losses of her father while a young child and husband after 10 years of marriage, Charlotte knows what it means practically and legally to put the pieces in place to create a future filled with security, hope, and opportunity, and find happiness once again. An avid sports fan, you can find Charlotte supporting SEC Athletics.