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Do We Need A Prenup?

Need? Want? Should? You know when it comes to the law, it is open for interpretation? How do you decide about a Prenup?

First of all, a “prenup” is a prenuptual agreement. A prenup establishes the property and financial rights of each spouse in the event of a divorce. Sometimes these agreements identify expectations of performance and issues involving children. It troubles me to look back at my two divorces and realize how much better off I’d be if I had insisted on a prenup. I think I would feel bad asking for one. Like saying, “Since we will probably be divorced inside a decade, why don’t we decide how we expect to leave the relationship!” Wow.

If you are thinking you will never need a prenup here are the facts:

Age at marriage for those who divorce in America
Under 20 years old Women 27.6% Men 11.7%
20 to 24 years old Women 36.6% Men 38.8%
25 to 29 years old Women 16.4% Men 22.3%
30 to 34 years old Women 8.5% Men 11.6%
35 to 39 years old Women 5.1% Men 6.5%

Divorce Statistics in America for Marriage
Marriage Divorce statistics (in percent)
First Marriage 45% to 50% marriages end in divorce
Second Marriage 60% to 67% marriages end in divorce
Third Marriage 70% to 73% marriages end in divorce

Not trying to be morbid, but facts are facts. I grew up like every other woman thinking I would find the perfect one, have kids and live happily ever after. Well, I have kids and I am living happily ever after.

Look over this list and you will find that, a prenup does not encourage divorce, it just sets some financial ground rules:

Distinguish between separate and marital property

Protect one spouse from the other’s debts

Provide for children from previous relationships

Keep family property in the family

Protect your estate plan

Define property distribution upon divorce:

Detail what responsibilities you have during the marriage

These may include:

  • Separate business
  • Retirement benefits
  • Income, deductions, and claims for filing your tax returns
  • Management of household bills and expenses
  • Management of joint bank accounts, if any
  • Arrangement regarding investing in certain purchases or projects, like a house or business
  • Management of credit card spending and payments
  • Savings contributions
  • Property distribution to the survivor, including life insurance, in the event of death
  • Arranging putting one or the other through school
  • Settlement of potential disagreements, such as using mediation or arbitration

A prenup or prenuptual agreement is 100% a legally binding contract. Many states have different allowances and restrictions on these contracts. Be smart, get a prenup and use a reputable attorney.

Let Don Harris – New Mexico Financial Law, assist you and your betrothed develop a Prenup that will allow you to exchange Nuptuals with a clear mind and an open heart.

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New Mexico Financial Law, PC

320 Gold Ave, SW
Suite 1401
Albuquerque, NM 87102

(505) 503-1637

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