Should you be concerned if your spouse asks for a prenup?

According to a poll of American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyer members, requests for prenuptial agreements are on the rise across the nation. More than 70 percent of members have seen the increase over the last five years; and if the trend continues, we could see more of these agreements down the road.

But for many people, prenuptial agreements often carry a negative connotation with them. People often assume that if you ask your spouse for a prenup then you do not have any faith in the relationship or don’t believe that it will last. If this is the case with a majority of people nationwide, then why is the presence of such legal documents on the rise and should someone be concerned if their spouse asks for one?

Although prenups along with post-nuptial agreements are often associated with high-asset couples, it’s worth pointing out that anyone can draft and sign one of these legal documents. A prenup or postnup can do a variety of things including establish one spouse’s expectations of the other during the course of marriage, how assets and debts will be divided in a divorce, or even how much support will be paid if the marriage ends.

But should someone be concerned if their spouse asks then to sign such an agreement?

Because every person’s situation is different, this question is difficult to answer with a straight yes or no. What can be said about prenups and post-nups is that they can be incredibly useful in the event of a divorce because they layout many things that often turn into disputes during the process.

Because the issues were discussed and decided upon while cooler heads prevailed, couples may not contest the prenup later on. This can greatly speed up the divorce process and can reduce a lot of the stresses associated with it as well.

Keep in mind though, prenups may not be the right course of action in every case, which is why speaking with a skilled lawyer may help.

Source: Madam Noire, “Prenup or Not to Prenup?  The Decision Facing Many Women Today,” Ann Brown, July 15, 2014