Prenuptial Agreements: To Sign or Not to Sign?
By Anjali Dooley, Legal Contributor
A taboo topic no one talks about but one that can be a very important consideration for South Asian women.
True love goes far beyond the courtship, wedding, and the honeymoon. However, the legal implications of mixing love and money are also life altering and profound. Every woman and man should be aware of their legal consequences of mixing love and money: rich, or poor.
The following are 25 practical and procedural reasons why a pre-nuptial agreement is an absolute must; multiply these reasons by two because of added crazy clauses, shady parties, and emotions that will take the PRENUPITAL AGREEMENT into the realm that only a seasoned attorney can help a person to distinguish the hues.
Reasons for Prenuptial
- Protection: It’s an insurance policy to protect yourself when emotions are running high should things go wrong in the marriage or union.
- Protect your assets: if you have more than your spouse.
- Protect yourself: if you have or make less than your spouse.
- Protect yourself for change, strife and issues that union and marriage brings.
- Protect your FUTURE: You plan on leaving your job for your spouse to pursue his/her career.
- Protect your PARTNERSHIP: Gives confidence to party seeking prenuptial that you are in it for the right reasons.
- Protect your BUSINESS: both if you already have an existing business, but especially if you have a start-up business.
- Protect your CHILDREN, or your future children financially and emotionally.
- Protect your REMARRAIGE: Seriously, if you are on your 2nd, 3rd, or 50th marriage, a prenuptial is a must.
- Protect your FAMILY WEALTH: if you come from wealth, protect your family-protect their estate plan.
Practicalities of a Prenuptial Agreement
- Be practical: It’s a contract nothing more, nothing less.
- Contracts need an OFFER, ACCEPTANCE, and CONSIDERATION. Make sure there is something each party is giving up and receiving.
- LIMIT the stress in change with a pre-determined agreement.
- Make sure the agreement is in WRITING
- Make sure the drafted instrument is executed properly, before the wedding, with witnesses.
- Obtain SEPARATE counsel for review and execution of the agreement to protect each parties interests
- NO PRESSURE: Make sure neither party was pressured into the agreement
- Actually READ the agreement.
- UNDERSTAND in layperson’s term the agreement: have a lawyer explain it to you.
- TIME: make sure both parties have time to review the agreement; don’t hand the agreement to other party right before the wedding.
- NO INVALID PROVISIONS—usually as it pertains to child support.
- NO FALSE INFORMATION provided to or by either party.
- Each party must PROVIDE COMPLETE NFORMATION to each other, prior to drafting.
- INVESTIGATE complete information before drafting.
- NOT UNCONSCIONABLE: the prenuptial agreement cannot be grossly unfair to one party to their financial detriment.
If you have any questions as to the prenuptial agreements or contracts please contact a seasoned attorney to review or walk you through the process before taking that life altering next step.
 Yes, people crazy clauses can be valid in prenuptial agreements: such as a weight gain clause, minimum amounts of sex clause, no football watching clause to name a few.
**The information in this post is not intended as legal advice. For legal questions please seek the advice of a licensed attorney in your jurisdiction.
Would you sign a prenup if you could go back in time as a mom or if you were to remarry? How would you talk to your adult children about signing a prenup?
Send your confidential legal questions to Anjali at: Columnists@masalamommas.com
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