Getting married is a major decision that impacts all areas of your life. While financial issues are probably the last thing on your mind as you prepare for your wedding, keep in mind that they are a significant source of strife for many couples.
That is why you should consider creating a pre-nuptial agreement prior to your marriage. These agreements dictate the terms for splitting assets should you and your spouse get divorced. While often considered unromantic, a solid prenup can spare you lots of stress when you use the following tips.
Be transparent when it comes to your assets
You must list all your assets in the document going into the marriage. If you fail to do so, the court can include them in the divorce agreement, since they were absent from the prenup. You must also make sure the value is accurate and that all potential assets feature in the document. Even an innocent omission, like forgetting to list a life insurance policy, can come back to haunt you later.
Avoid unenforceable clauses
Pre-nups cannot include information regarding child custody and support, as the courts decide these matters according to your child’s needs. You also should avoid information about chores or other personal topics, as the court cannot enforce them. Avoiding these clauses can maintain the integrity of the document and ensure it holds up in court.
Bring up the topic well before you get married
Many states have rules about the timing of pre-nups. The belief is that signing the document too close to the wedding day could cause a party to feel coerced into the agreement. Creating the document at least six months prior to the wedding allows both parties time to negotiate and make an informed decision.
Financial issues cause lots of conflicts in a marriage, and sometimes these issues can lead to divorce. While you cannot predict the future, discussing these matters with your spouse-to-be prior to getting married ensures you’re on the same page.