Prenup Or Not To Prenup? The Decision Facing Many Women Today
“Prenup” is probably the most controversial word in the English language when it comes to weddings. But the fact is they’re becoming more and more common to protect the assets on both sides of the equation. Just think of all the drama around Kandi Burruss getting her now-husband Todd Tucker to sign a prenuptial agreement.
The reality show star addressed the situation on camera (of course) on her hit show Kandi’s Wedding.
Some criticized Burruss for having such a strict prenup. But as she told The Grio, “You don’t get to see it a lot… where a woman is financially better off than the husband. You have to protect yourself.”
She added: “I feel like we should work together to make money together. The things that I’m trying to protect are the things that I had going into the marriage, meaning: Bedroom Kandi, my music, my stores, my properties and different things that I had going into the marriage.”
Burruss is not alone. More women are seeking prenups before they say “I do.”
According to a recent poll of American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyer (AAML) members, 52 percent of divorce attorneys said there has been an increase in women initiating the requests. Overall, 73 percent of the AAML members saw an increase in prenuptial agreements during the past five years.
Prenups aren’t only for the rich,and they should be a consideration if you make more money than your spouse. You can also draw up a post-nup after you are married. And if you aren’t married but you’re in committed relationship, you can agree to a cohabitation agreement, which covers basically the same items as a prenup.
“Interestingly, these requests are no longer just limited to a specific gender or age group,” said Marlene Eskind Moses, president of the AAML in a press release. “In addition, as our society sees more people marry or remarry in their later years, there is an increasing emphasis on protecting pensions and retirement benefits if the marriage does not work out.”
Prenups can cover such things as: how to split finances, who keeps what items, what happens to the home, how debt is divided, financial support for a spouse, child support, and other concerns. Some feel prenups mean you believe your marriage will end, but they do not increase the likelihood of divorce.
“Anytime that a person has sufficient assets existing before marriage or expects to have such assets during marriage, a prenuptial agreement is a good idea,” family law expert attorney Linda S. Aland explains to MadameNoire. “In Texas, where I practice, the prenuptial agreement can provide that no community estate will ever exist. The latter provision can protect the high-wage earner from future sharing of monies accumulated during marriage.”
Spousal obligations vary depending on the state.
Of course, many times prenups are challenged when divorce papers are filed. “Prenuptial agreements are usually challenged during a divorce situation, when the spouse who does not like the document’s terms, and their effect upon how the assets can be divided by a court, claims fraud, duress, failure to follow proper formalities in execution of the document or any number of other claims,” explains Aland.
Though it is recommended that you use a lawyer, you can create your own premarital agreement, eHow offers some tips on a DIY arrangements. Given the previous paragraph, we’d probably steer clear of this option and spend the money for legal counsel.
“If anything, prenups force both parties to talk openly about their finances from the get-go, which is a great thing,” reports The Seattle Post Intelligencer.