FEDweek

Prenups Are Prudent

A well-executed prenuptial agreement is vital when both spouses come into a marriage with significant assets, children, or both. A "prenup" can spell out which expenses will be the husband’s, which will be the wife’s, and which will be the couple’s. In addition, a prenup can specify where marital assets will go, in case of death or divorce.

For a prenup to be valid, each party should have an attorney, and those attorneys should be independent of each other. The agreement should fully disclose each spouse-to-be’s assets and liabilities.

To implement a prenup, don’t wait until the last minute. Some prenups have been overturned in situations where one spouse appears to have pressured the other to go along, right before the wedding.

To avoid personal problems, have your attorney or accountant or financial planner raise the issue of a prenup, rather than doing so yourself. Your professional advisor can say that an agreement will protect both spouses and the children. This approach is likely to lead to an agreement rather than an argument.