Many young couples approaching their first marriage often assume that it is unnecessary to consider a prenuptial agreement. After all, they will surely stay together, and they don’t have many assets right now, so why even bother? Creating a prenuptial agreement may offer important protections to the rich or to those who want to remarry later in life, but isn’t it a little overboard for a young couple with few assets?
These are good questions to ask, especially if it encourages a young couple to research prenuptial agreements in greater detail. Even young couples with few assets at the beginning of the marriage can still benefit significantly, and a prenuptial agreement that truly represents their particular relationship may strengthen it for the long haul.
The assumption that a young couple does not need a prenuptial agreement is probably based on a misunderstanding of the advantages and protections that prenuptial agreements offer. If, for instance, one or both partners have significant debt, a prenuptial agreement can designate that debt the sole property of its owner, instead of joining it with the couple’s marital property. Practically speaking, this can keep creditors from pursuing one spouse’s property to satisfy the debts of the other spouse.
Similarly, if one or both party’s plan to start a business or have plans for a creative work they cherish, a prenuptial agreement is an excellent tool one spouse can use to say, “This business or creation that you care deeply about should remain yours and yours alone if things between us do not work out.” Making these arrangements while the relationship is happy and healthy is a good way to ensure each spouse remains protected if the marriage hits hard times.