Monday, July 26, 2010

To Pre-nup or Not to Pre-nup?

Pre-nuptial agreement - *the first pre-nuptial agreement was recorded in 1916*
A pre-marriage agreement, also known as a prenuptial or ante nuptial agreement is a legal document. It is a contract between you and your fiancée that addresses financial issues and any other issues that are important to you and your fiancée.

Do you have a Pre-nuptial agreement? Were you asked to sign a pre-nuptial agreement? Was it ever discussed or even thought about? If you (even if you are the woman reading this) could do your marriage over would you have signed one? Well, I was never asked BUT I got married at 26 and he was 28 and we were kind of going in this thing with everything we had. No, we didn't have money like the ballers and shot-callers but what we did have we made sure and agreed that it would all be one. And honestly, I say that because I know we didn't have it like that - so it's easy to say. But what if my husband did have money like "The Dream" - who reportedly made Christina Milian sign papers in the midst of her labor! Or T.I. who is marrying Tiny in Miami on July 31st! Would he have made me sign a pre-nup then? I would hope not. Or what if the shoe was on the other foot and I had more money than my man like Jennifer Hudson? Would I ask for a pre-nup? Should I?

I say that because - to me, a pre-nup is a secure way out. Marriage is serious business and it's not a boyfriend girlfriend relationship. It's a contract. It's a covenant. Marriage is an economic partnership. You should have full financial disclosure of your fiancée’s assets, debts and income before and during the marriage. You should know what your spouse is willing to share with you before the marriage. And you shouldn't (just my thoughts) go into it thinking about a way out. Because if you are thinking about a way out before you even go in - maybe you shouldn't get married - or married to that person. Now, we all know marriages don't work out - shoot we see divorces all the time - but WHY? That's a whole other blog. But for those that haven't gotten married - really think about this decision, because marriage is not something you can walk away from in one day (like you can your boyfriend!). Divorce is expensive, draining and really brings out the worst in people. As for the pre-nup, I would personally say no because you shouldn't marry for money (only!). You marry because you believe (you should) that this person is your soul mate and you want to share it ALL with him/her. ALL!! You hear me, ALL! Which means your possessions and you’re MONEY! You work to build a life together and grow in every way together; spiritually, financially, mentally and physically. If you start of by saying, "sign this because just in are not getting this!" That means you always have that in the back of your mind!

I would love to know the statistics of married couples who sign a pre-nup! Also if you have that much money and you have to make her sign a pre-nup - is there already a lack of trust? Or is there already a tiny bit of doubt that it might not work? Or you are just protecting yourself? Protecting yourself from what? Your soul mate, your future spouse, your so-called best friend? You should know that person well enough that if it didn't work out that he/she wouldn't take you to the bank and try to break you. Or are you the type to try to break that person. Again, pre-nup or no-pre-nup?


Tosha said...

I see your POV, however, I do feel pre-nups are necessary sometimes. For example, IMO, Alicia Keys needs a pre-nup...not that I wish her marriage to Swizz Beats to fail, but it's to protect herself in case it does! I do agree that you should know every detail of your future spouse's finances, as the two will be meshed. But I don't see any fault in protecting what you had BEFORE the two of you married. This applies to Men also. Thanks for the forum!

Anonymous said...

I also did not sign a pre husband and I were young also and really didn't "have it like that" to sign one, but I believe with certain people, like those mentioned in the original post, it is necessary to sign one!

BTW, the page is looking great!:} Haven't gotten a chance to get on as much this is really looking nice...keep up the great work!!!

Anonymous said...

This is a really good post and I have mixed feelings about prenup's. Because of where I got married we were obligated to sign one on the day of our wedding in the hall. We were asked to make a choice between a few different types of arrangements, but we chose the one that seemed to be most fair. Truthfully I don't feel comfortable with a woman having to take care of a man. In case things don't work out and I become more successful and we split, I don't want to take care of him, be it financial or otherwise. I believe women should receive something in case the relationship goes sour, since most men have to be hunted down after separation to provide for their children. As for a woman marrying for financial security or just popping out babies to do the same the paperwork should be in hand at the first encounter. In brief, they are necessary. Do I like them? not really, but not everyone makes the right decisions when it comes to choosing a partner for life.

V.E.L.A. Beauty said...

I'm all for a Pre-Nup!

Most of you probably didn't have children going into a marriage. Since I do, my interests are in protecting my children's futures and their welfare. So I can understand why your point of view would be against the Pre-Nup. Pre-Nups are stereotyped by too many people as a means of selfishness or as an option out of the relationship. For some this may be true, but it is not right to lump everyone in the same pot.

Marriage is a business arraingement and before you walk down the aisle you need to have ALL plans in order. Wills, trusts, executors, whatever... these are no different from prenuptual agreements. Pre-Nups are not just about keeping money from the other spouse, there are other things that can be included in a pre-nup. It's like putting your deal breakers on the table when you're dating except now it's in writing.

Pre-Nups may be more beneficial for those who have been married before and have accumulated some level of wealth and security for their children. Maybe it just wasn't right for two young single people jumping the broom. However, I know a young couple with prenups despite not having much. So, Prenups are right for some and not so for others. So, I understand both sides of the spectrum and would never judge someone's intentions based on the fact that they want a Prenuptual agreement.

If I had to do it all over again, I would have had a Pre-Nup in the beginning. You can't say you'll never get divorced... if you plan for death, why not plan for mishaps along the way? I think this is wise and prudent.

Toccara Mclachlan said...

Some couples are not comfortable with having a pre-nuptial agreement for the reason of lack of trust and so on. This is understandable; but what some people didn’t know, pre-nups can be applied when one of the partner passed away. My lawyer explained to me that a person has what they call a community and separate property; if one of the partners died and no pre-nuptial was made, the spouse will have a hard time settling the properties. Anyway, everyone wanted to have a long-lasting relationship, but it’s always better to be prepared when unexpected events such as this happened. This is an interesting topic and nice fact to share, by the way. ;-)

Toccara Mclachlan

Anonymous said...

I'm up to signing a prenup. It doesn't necessary mean that if you sign, you distrust your partner. It is one way of putting your trust, which is what I think what we should protect. When you're about to marry someone, the two intangible things that you're about to give along with love are the trust and respect—trust for every action that he/she does, and respect for his/her privacy.

Ferdinand Draper