“Falling in love is romantic, but paying the bills is pragmatic,” says American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers (“AAML”) President Marlene Eskind Moses in citing the commonsense and growing allure that prenuptial agreements have for individuals and couples seeking to protect retirement income.
Given that, as Moses says, “There’s a 100 percent chance you’re going to die and 50 percent chance that you are going to be divorced,” many more people these days think prenups when they contemplate a potential divorce down the road and the division of property and assets that existed prior to and/or were accrued during a marriage.
The utility and growing acceptance of a prenuptial agreement among engaged couples and people entering a second or subsequent marriage is confirmed by a recent poll of divorce attorneys by the AAML. Nearly three quarters of the poll’s respondents stated that they have seen an increased amount of prenups over the past five years, many sought to be executed by women and many of them focused on preserving retirement income in the event of a divorce.
There is a lot to consider, including pensions, IRAs and 401(k)s. Moreover, a prenuptial agreement makes sense in many instances for a partner entering a marriage with children from a previous marriage or for a person who is a business owner prior to a marriage. And, although many people do not realize it, prenups are also an effective tool in many other cases, such as when a couple in a religiously mixed marriage (e.g., Catholic and Protestant; Jewish and Christian) by clearly articulating child-rearing understandings to avoid disputes later.
Quite simply, a prenuptial agreement can be a broad-based and useful tool for premarital planning. An individual or couple seeking information on prenups should contact a family law attorney with proven experience in executing these agreements.