The effects of the COVID pandemic are being felt throughout the world in big and small ways. The impact is seeping into the many aspects of daily life. As we all adjust to remote attendance at work, school and other activities, the COVID pandemic has brought home the importance of family relationships. Couples planning their wedding (or expecting to be married soon) have had to rethink the timing and nature of the event. Romantic partnerships have been tested and priorities reassessed.
While some couples have chosen to adjust their wedding plans and are having virtual ceremonies for family and friends to attend via live stream or Zoom, others have opted to trim down the guest list and attempt to celebrate safely and socially distanced. For many couples, the best plan has been to postpone the wedding until a return to “normalcy.” For these couples, there may be a silver lining.
By postponing a wedding, a couple may have time to focus on their expectations about how their marriage will work from a financial perspective. There is an opportunity to discuss each person’s philosophy about money and long-term issues that will impact the marriage. I have worked with many couples that sought a prenup, but were concerned that the wedding was approaching too quickly for them to accomplish a comprehensive, durable agreement. While a post-nuptial may be created after the wedding which captures the couple’s intentions, many couples prefer to execute a prenuptial agreement and have it completed by their wedding day.
Couples now have an opportunity to discuss their thoughts on prenups and whether a prenup is a wise choice for them. Prenups help avoid stressful situations because they help to clarify expectations about how the marriage will work and what happens in case of divorce or death. Some positive reasons for having a prenup are as follows:
- Clarifying financial rights and obligations
- Looking at finances before marriage helps create a foundation for good communication about how things will work
- Establishing property rights and distribution
- Protecting family property
- Protecting a family business
- Clarifying expectations regarding property acquired before marriage such as a house or apartment
- Keeping finances separate
- Protecting a spouse from the other’s debt
- Passing separate property to children
- Creating certainty about pets
- Establishing certainty about the use of social media
- Reducing conflict
A negotiated prenup is an opportunity for open and honest discussion. It can serve as a platform to make informed choices in contemplation of a strong and loving relationship. If you are planning to get married, it is a smart way to plan for a safe and secure future. For more information on prenups, please visit the prenup page of my website.