v45 – I’m Getting Married… Should I Get A Prenuptial Agreement?
Video Script Below
“I’m getting married, should I get a pre-nup? I’m Steve Kramer. I’m a Florida divorce attorney. And today we’re going to be talking about pre-nuptial agreements. What is a pre-nuptial agreement? A pre-nuptial agreement is an agreement that you enter into before you get married to govern how your assets and debts are going to get divided and distributed if one of you dies or if you ever get divorced. You might want to look at a pre-nuptial agreement if one of you has a lot of debt or you’re concerned about your spouse being on the hook for your debt or maybe your spouse is concerned about being hooked for your debt. You might want to also look at a pre-nuptial agreement if you have a business. You may have spent the past 20 years building up a very successful business and you want to be sure that business interest is protected if you ever get divorced or you die or if your spouse dies – any of those situations.
Another occasion where you might want to get a pre-nuptial agreement is if you’ve got a lot of assets. If you’ve accumulated a couple of hundred of thousands of dollars or maybe a million dollars even, you may have everything and your spouse may have nothing. And if you don’t sign a pre-nuptial agreement and you’re divorced – even if it’s a short-term marriage – everything may be up for grabs. And this may be your life savings that may be lost on a short-term marriage. Or if you die, your children may lose the benefit of your lifetime’s work or your family’s money. These are reasons to get a pre-nuptial agreement. Now if you’re going to do a pre-nuptial agreement, there’s a couple things you need to make sure that you do. One is you have to have full disclosure. You have to put everything on the table so that the spouse knows everything that’s there. This is not the time to hide the ball, this is the time to be out front and get everything out there. If you’re going to do a pre-nuptial agreement, you’ve got to make sure that you both voluntarily sign it. So even if I prepare a pre-nuptial agreement for you, we might want your spouse – or your future spouse – to sit down with another attorney to go over. Because it’s better if she gives – or he gives – his informed consent to the pre-nuptial agreement. Now the final thing to look at with a pre-nuptial agreement is an attorney can only represent one person in a pre-nuptial agreement. So, if you come in and hire our firm, we represent only you.
We’re here only to protect your interests. And if your future spouse is going to meet with an attorney, that attorney is going to represent them only. And that’s important because you do not want to be in a situation where an attorney is trying to protect both your interests. That’s not possible. You have a situation where in the future you can be in a potential conflict and it could invalidate the pre-nuptial agreement or cause a lot of other problems for you. I’m telling you this because we deal with divorce all the time. We see life savings lost. We see people who have worked hard their entire lives to accumulate something and then lose it all in a short-term marriage. We’ve seen family’s thrift, meaning the savings that maybe your father and mother saved your entire life and passed on to you – we’ve seen that lost. And we’ve children who were entitled to an inheritance, where the parents wanted them to have it, and they lost part of that inheritance or more than part of it. This is a good time to sit down with an attorney. And if you have any questions at all, call me. I’d be glad to talk to you and answer any questions you’ve got.
Thanks for watching. I’m Steve Kramer.”
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