How Do I Talk to My Fiancée About a Prenup?

How Do I Talk to My Fiancée About a Prenup?

start conversation about prenups

The moment you’ve been waiting for; you and your significant other have decided to get married, with the hope that you’ll happily spend the rest of your lives together. The last thing you want to do is ruin the joyful anticipation you feel planning for your wedding and bringing up the conversation about prenups. However, you also know that many marriages, no matter how promising they seem at the start, end in divorce. You want to have a prenuptial agreement in place to clarify your financial rights and responsibilities in the event of a divorce, but you don’t know how to bring up the topic. 

Although broaching the subject of a prenuptial agreement can be difficult, the discussion and agreement that result can help strengthen your relationship if approached thoughtfully. Even if the details of what constitutes an ideal approach vary from couple to couple, certain basic principles can help your conversation go more smoothly and increase the odds of creating a prenup you’re both satisfied with. In this blog post, you will learn how to effectively start the conversation about prenups with your partner.

Considering a Prenuptial Agreement?

Starting the Conversation about Prenups

The sensitivity of a conversation about prenups means that it should be initiated with extra care. After all, conversations about money in general tend to be awkward, and in the context of the possible breakup of a relationship, they have the potential to become emotional and contentious quickly. This means that the most important first step to take is to start early.

conversation about prenups is a delicate topic, one that doesn’t benefit from being rushed. You will need ample time to discuss both the emotional aspects and the actual terms of any agreement, so do not put it off. This isn’t just a matter of being respectful and sensitive to your partner—it’s a practical issue as well. California has specific timing requirements regarding prenups that, if not met, risk invalidating the agreement.  

Enabling Effective Communication on Prenuptial Agreements

starting conversation about prenups

How else can you facilitate open, positive conversation about prenups? Take care of how you pick your moment(s). You will likely not be having a single conversation about a prenup, but several, as you and your partner discuss your feelings around a prenup, terms that are important to each of you, and your financial goals in general. Plan these discussions for when you are both feeling calm and are not distracted. After a fight, in the presence of future in-laws, after a long day or sleepless night, and other highly stressful moments are not the time to bring it up.

Before you raise the subject, you should also be clear about why you want a prenup.  Yes, a prenup is valuable for both parties because it can help avoid the expense and stress of lengthy divorce proceedings if you should someday split. However, knowing the specific goals you are hoping to achieve through a prenup—protecting your business, safeguarding inheritance rights for children from a first marriage, ensuring the certain property you bring into the marriage remains separate—can help keep the conversation practical and focused. 

Recognize that compromise is an essential part of creating an agreement that protects both parties. Your partner will likely have concerns that can and should be addressed in the prenup as well. For example, if they might take significant time out of the workforce to stay at home with children, a prenup can provide financial protection from the impact on their career. Emphasizing that any prenup will be a co-created document intended to look out for the interests of you both (rather than a one-sided deal your partner will simply be expected to sign) can help defuse negative emotions around the discussion.

From Bringing Up the Idea of a Prenup to Creating Legal Documents

An essential step in moving on from initial discussions of a prenup to getting terms on paper is open and honest disclosure of your finances. Again, this isn’t just about respect—a lack of full and fair disclosure can be grounds for a prenuptial agreement being declared invalid by the court. The silver lining is that this type of transparency before marriage helps to build trust, by ensuring that neither one of you is hiding important financial information from the other. 

Each side should, ideally, have their own legal representation when it comes time to draft and execute the agreement. Making sure that your partner has separate counsel of their own choosing to represent their interests can help provide reassurance that you are not attempting to coerce them into an agreement that is not in their best interest. It will also help ensure that the final agreement you reach is comprehensive, fair, and legally enforceable.

Expert Prenuptial Agreement Attorneys in Oakland, CA

Addressing prenuptial concerns openly may feel frightening, but the reward is worth the risk. A well-crafted prenuptial agreement can protect your interests while setting the stage for a mutual understanding that can strengthen your relationship. If you have questions about creating a prenup that is right for your situation, the expert attorneys at Hart Ginney can help. To schedule a consultation, call our East Bay office at (510) 628-0250 or fill out the form below today.

1939 Harrison Street, Suite 210
Oakland, CA 94612

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