12 Pros & Cons Of Prenups

12 Pros & Cons Of Prenups [EXPERT]

Pro: When there are children involved, prenups are increasingly important. Children should be a priority so that they are taken care of in the event of a divorce or death. —Dr. John Beiter

Con: Proponents argue that having a prenup prevents costly litigation at the time of the divorce. But the divorce lawyer for the less affluent spouse almost always tries to have the agreement set aside if its terms are too lopsided. So where's the cost savings? —Meri Arnett-Kremian

Pro: It is easier to come to an agreement when a couple is getting along versus during a bitter disagreement; everyone would be better off to discuss the difficult topics upfront. —Dr. John Beiter

Con: Whether or not it's acknowledged, the person pushing for a prenuptial agreement is demonstrating a lack of faith, both in the relationship and the integrity and fairness of the partner. Asking for a prenup says, "I'm not sure our relationship will work out in the long run and I need to protect myself from your greed and over-reaching." It's rare for a person proposing a pre-marriage agreement to act solely to protect the interests of his or her spouse-to-be. How much commitment to "us" is he likely to demonstrate when he's worrying about protecting himself from you even before you say, "I do?" —Meri Arnett-Kremian

Pro: "No man is an island," says John Donne, and that goes for couples as well.  Many people have families and even children coming into a marriage.  Prenups aren't just about protecting your assets in the case of divorce, they are about allocating them in the event of death. —Carol Clark

Con: Negotiating a pre-marriage agreement that anticipates divorce is definitely not romantic. It's a hard-nosed business transaction and virtually always involves an imbalance of power in favor of the person demanding an agreement. There's also a hint of coercion. "Sign the agreement or the marriage is off." Lovely way to start a honeymoon, don't you think? Makes you wonder whether this is truly a relationship between equals. Under these circumstances, the answer should be obvious. —Meri Arnett-Kremian

Pro: Put your money where your mouth is. People in love will say that they are each others' best friend and they can talk about anything. A discussion about a prenup is an opportunity to do just that.  If you are hesitant, then this is the time to work it out. —Carol Clark

Con: Because the legal safeguards in my state are pretty hefty and prenups often overturned because something in the content or process is flawed or objectionable, it's not something I recommended to clients as their lawyer. —Meri Arnett-Kremian

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