When couples in New Jersey and around the country walk down the aisle, they want to believe that their marriages will stand the test of time. They are often mistaken. The divorce rate in the United States has remained pretty much unchanged for decades, and the sobering reality is that about close to half of all marriages fail sooner or later. With odds like that, it is not surprising that prenuptial agreements are becoming more popular.
Talking about money
Couples who enter into prenuptial agreements often view the documents they sign as a form of divorce insurance, but these documents do far more than determine how assets should be divided and how much – or if – alimony should be paid. Negotiating the terms of a prenuptial agreement involves talking about money and how money is managed, and these conversations could help couples to avoid the kind of issues that often lead to divorce. Money problems are one of the leading causes of divorce, and it is often the mismanagement of money and not a lack of funds that causes marital strife.
Emotions usually run high in a divorce, and this is especially true when spouses discuss how their assets should be divided. It is not uncommon for a spouse to become belligerent over an asset that they do not really care about but know is cherished by their husband or wife. They do this in order to antagonize the other party and gain concessions, and it often works. Discussing these matters in advance and with cool heads avoids bitter negotiations and could greatly lower the cost of a divorce. Prenuptial agreements have pros and cons, but the advantages outweigh the disadvantages in most situations.
A proactive approach
Prenuptial agreements provide couples with a proactive way to deal with the possibility of divorce. They allow spouses to decide for themselves how financial matters should be handled if they choose to divorce, and the issues they discuss could help them to avoid problems that undermine many marriages. However, prenuptial agreements are sometimes challenged in court by divorcing spouses who feel their terms are unfair. If you decide to draft a prenuptial agreement, you have to negotiate the terms in good faith and disclose all of your assets during negotiations.