When you're planning your wedding, the excitement of the day to come can often overshadow some of the more reasonable and practical things that you may need to consider. For example, many soon-to-be newlyweds overlook the potential effects the marriage can have on their financial goals and future. While nobody wants to go into a marriage expecting divorce, it is important that you are practical about the future. Here are a few of the reasons why you should think about signing a prenuptial agreement before you say your vows.
Being Financially Proactive
Although many people attribute prenuptial agreements to protecting wealth, the truth is that these agreements can actually be used to force you and your spouse to be practical and proactive about financial planning.
For example, although many couples pool their finances and openly discuss financial issues from the beginning, you may find that you don't know what kinds of debts your significant other has. This can lead to a financial disaster, especially if you haven't openly discussed your spending habits and debt concerns.
Drafting a prenuptial agreement opens up the opportunity to have a frank and practical discussion about your household finances and the way that you'll handle money. For example, if one of you is a saver while the other is a spender, you may want the prenuptial agreement to protect the saver in the relationship from debts incurred by their spender spouse in the event that you get divorced.
Clarifying Inheritance Expectations
Another key reason to consider a prenuptial agreement is to clarify the final settlement of any property or other valuable inheritance that either of you may receive during your marriage. For example, if one of you inherits a piece of property after you're married, the other spouse may try to place a partial financial claim on that property in the event of a divorce. By putting a clause in the prenuptial agreement that ensures rights to the property for whoever inherited it, that protects against this kind of risk.
Despite the perspective of prenuptial agreements being reserved for those with large cash reserves, the fact is that they are important for any soon-to-be-married couple. With the information here, you can see how those agreements may help with other situations as well. Before you walk down the aisle, talk with a family law attorney about your options for a prenuptial agreement that protects both of you.