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Wedding planning should include prenuptial agreement discussion

Planning a wedding is often an emotional endeavor. However, for North Carolina couples, one detail that is often overlooked is a discussion about a prenuptial agreement.

Some people never consider a prenuptial agreement. They think it is only for celebrities or a wealthy person who is marrying a partner with significantly fewer assets. Some people are convinced that they will never need a prenuptial agreement and that discussing such an issue may be unpleasant at a time when discussions should be about flowers and catering. In fact, one-third of Americans believe that prenuptial agreements make sense; however, less than 5 percent of couples actually have one.

Prenuptial agreements can be important for women, who often earn less money than men. Prenuptial agreements are a way to recognize the value of the partner who stays home and raises children while the other partner works outside the home. Prenuptial agreements can even be important in cases where neither party comes into the marriage with substantial assets. If one or both parties enter the marriage with substantial debt, a prenuptial agreement can be the means to separate the debt obligations and specify whose income will pay which debts should a divorce occur.

The fact that so few Americans have prenuptial agreements does not mean that they are unimportant. While almost no one enters into marriage with the expectation of divorce, divorces do occur at a rather high rate. If an individual is contemplating marriage, he or she may want to speak to an attorney with experience in this area. The attorney may be able to help the individual determine whether a prenuptial agreement is needed and may draft a customized prenuptial agreement, often in conjunction with the attorney for the other party.

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