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Tips for discussing a prenup

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Getting married should be one of the most wonderful, exciting moments in your life, and a time for happiness and celebration. However, although you may have nothing but the best intentions and highest of hopes for your own union, reports like this one remind us that about half of marriages end in divorce.

With this in mind, it is only natural that you may be considering the option of drafting a prenuptial agreement before the wedding. However, this can prove to be an extremely sensitive subject, particularly if your partner isn't expecting to talk about how to divide assets in the event of a divorce. If you are in this situation, we have a few tips below for how you make it a little easier to talk about a prenup.

  1. Be honest. This is an undoubtedly emotional process, but the fact is that you (or your partner) have to consider and protect the finances and properties at stake. Be honest about this and remind yourself and each other that a prenup is a way to lay all your cards on the table and get some security in place. It is not an indication that you do not have confidence in your marriage.
  2. Don't be a bully. This is not a decision to make lightly, so don't expect that you or your partner should just sign it and get it over with. In fact, coercion could ultimately backfire and be grounds to challenge the enforceability of a prenup.
  3. Don't be a pushover. Give yourself the time and consideration to really examine the document and make sure it is fair. If you see something questionable or that you disagree with, then speak up now. Being polite or ignoring your instincts could come back to haunt you when and if the time comes to enforce the agreement.
  4. Call in the professionals. Talking about a prenup can be hard enough without also trying to figure out whether it's fair and legally binding. This is why you will want to consult an attorney and potentially a financial advisor to review the agreement with you. Having these advocates on your team can mean leaving the negotiating and legal posturing in someone else's hands. In the alternative, many couples have found that going to a mediator or using the collaborative practice model allows for a more productive and positive process.

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