Prenuptial agreements are generally known as being antithetical to romance. But in this month of Valentine’s Day, I offer you a bouquet of reasons why, if viewed with a positive attitude, your prenuptial agreement can enhance your romance.
Your prenuptial agreement –
- Forces you to confront your fears head on. You will be forced to name and acknowledge your hopes and fears. However, getting through the process is liberating and empowering.
- Helps you and your fiancé communicate your values. The process will force you to have a real conversation with each other about the things that matter to you most.
- Helps you set boundaries. You and your intended will clarify which will be joint property and which will be property you will keep separate.
- Creates a model for solving complex problems. Problem solving is one of the most important things you and your fiancé can do. Life will throw challenges your way – you enter your marriage knowing you can get through those challenges.
- Enables you to take care of each other. You will start out knowing that you are each using the resources you have to care for each other – during and after the marriage.
- Gives you the chance to rest better, knowing that your loved one will be cared for after your death. Prenups can address how you will care for each other after you are gone.
- Shows respect for your families. Honestly, it is often concern for other family members – particularly parents and children – that drives fiancés from engaging in the prenup process.
- Enables you to come into your marriage with honesty and vulnerability. One key feature of a prenup is that you list all of your finances. This full disclosure forces you to be transparent, which often feels very vulnerable. Being open with each other is key to a deep and lasting relationship.
- Expresses your love by being fair and honorable. Give each other enough time to really think out the terms of the agreement. The agreement should be signed well ahead of the wedding. Plan ahead.
- Expresses your generosity. Both of you must have a matrimonial attorney. If you have more resources, it might behoove you to pay for your fiance’s attorney. You can protect your intended from your own debts/prior obligations.
- Enables you to get a clean start. The prenup gives you the opportunity to protect your fiancé from your debts. You agree not to bring your baggage into the marriage.
- Helps you plan for sunset. You can have a “sunset clause,” a date when the agreement will expire. Or you can have a plan for how you will care for each other as you grow old.
- Takes issues off the table in case of divorce. By addressing things now, you will settle issues at a time when you still have love and generosity in your heart.
- Strengthens your bond. Being honest, open and transparent goes a long way to creating a strong and loving partnership.
Your prenuptial agreement should be signed with knowledge, dignity and power. Communicating together with love, kindness, a sense of fairness, and honest communication gives you and your fiancé the opportunity to strengthen your bond, and to start your life’s journey together on the right foot.