Massachusetts Legal Blog
Don’t Get “Carried Away” on the Wings of Love
Meeting that someone special, falling in love, and deciding to get married—this sequence is probably the most exciting time in people’s lives! But there’s more to consider before and after a proposal than just what the wedding colors are going to be. There are practical considerations that you need to talk about…like the dreaded prenuptial agreement.
As Valentine’s Day approaches, if you think that there may be a “big question” being popped, you may want to ask yourself some of these questions first.
Do Prenups Ruin Relationships?
Prenups have gotten a bad name in the past. “How can you be thinking about money at a time like this?” your beloved cries. Or, “If you loved me, you’d trust me.” Or the worst: “Do you plan on getting a divorce? No? Then you don’t need a prenup!”
But these same people who think prenups will kill the romance are not thinking about them correctly. They believe that just bringing up the idea of a prenup is also bringing up the idea that the marriage will end in divorce.
But there’s no reason to think this way.
Instead, you should view a prenup as insurance for your marriage. Few people would get behind the wheel of a car without having insurance for it. And no homeowner would leave his house open to the risk of flooding and fire without having some kind of protection.
Prenups are just that. They are protection, for both parties, in the event that something does go wrong. And protection is sexy, as the media keeps telling us.
Can a Prenup Stoke the Flames?
The protection that prenups provide is their greatest benefit. When a couple divorces, one spouse could be left paying alimony, another’s debt, and child support. If the divorce was particularly bitter, one spouse could try to claim more expenses simply because he or she wants to punish the ex. All of this can be avoided with a prenup in place, stating exactly who will be responsible for what expenses and how property will be divided.
Remember, all divorces, even the friendliest and most mutual divorces, are stressful, and a prenup can eliminate a lot of that stress. Not to mention that a typical divorce can take a long time, even years, before it is settled in court. A prenup can greatly expedite the process, as there will be far fewer things to discuss and much of it will be predetermined.
Bringing up the possibility of a prenup doesn’t mean it’s not love. It simply means that you’re a realistic, responsible, and forward-thinking person.
How Are Millennials Doing It Right?
If there’s one group that doesn’t get a bad taste in their mouth upon hearing the word prenup, it’s Millennials. Studies have shown that prenups are on the rise in this age group, and that mostly women are asking for them. There are two main reasons why this is happening.
The first is that the Millennials have been exposed to divorce, perhaps more than any generation before them. With a current divorce rate near 50% in the United States, Millennials saw their own parents divorced, read about celebrity divorces making headlines, or saw family and friends going through divorce. They know it’s a possibility, and they want to be prepared.
Second, Millennials are also waiting longer to get married. Many want to have an established career before they marry or start a family; and so, they have already accumulated a great deal in savings and assets before getting married. By protecting those years of hard work that occurred before their wedding day, Millennials don’t see prenups as the necessary evils that many generations before them did.
Valentine’s Day is approaching, and for you, that might mean a proposal or deepening romance. But before getting swept up in rings and wedding talk, it’s important to have a conversation about protecting yourself with a prenup.
For a free sit-down with a Methuan family law attorney to discuss your marital agreements, please call DiBella Law Offices, P.C., at (978) 327-5140. Happy V-Day!
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