Should you always ask your partner to sign a prenup? | The Tylt
Should you always ask your partner to sign a prenup?
As tragic as divorce can be, it is something that every couple should realistically prepare for. Think about it this way: No one wants to have to use their fire extinguisher, but where would you be if you didn't have one around?
In early 2019, Jeff Bezos announced that he and MacKenzie Tuttle Bezos would be getting a divorce after 25 years of marriage. According to TMZ, the couple has no prenuptial agreement (one can assume this is because Jeff Bezos was not the billionaire he is today at the time of their marriage). State laws in Washington call for divorces to divvy couples' assets evenly, meaning Tuttle Bezos could be walking away with a fresh $66 billion. If this happens, the divorce could be the most expensive in history, according to CNBC.
After a whirlwind romance in 1992, the couple married within six months of their first date. Bezos started Amazon in 1993. As The Daily Beast's Barbie Latza Nadeau puts it:
'If we had known we would separate after 25 years of marriage, we would do it all again,' Bezos wrote in the joint statement. But one has to ask, would he also do it again without a prenup?
Some believe you should not plan for a worst-case scenario when it comes to marriage. If you believe the institution is about love and devotion, agreeing on what will happen if and when that love runs out doesn't sound like the greatest idea. HuffPost's Tamara Shayne Kagel explains that by not having a prenup, couples are also more inclined to work on their marriage, rather than split up, when things get tough:
...if a married couple is unhappy, and they have two options back to happiness, one is to work hard at the marriage, probably through talk therapy and time spent together, etc. and the other is by separating, I don't consider the options equal.
But because marriage is so hard is the reason divorce must also look hard. If you have an easy out, it is all the more tempting not to do the hard work of repairing and maintaining a relationship and to just turn to the easy alternative. The fact that a divorce can be ugly and messy should be additional motivation for staying together.
Prenups are simply logical. According to Bankrate:
Any couple who brings personal or business assets to the marriage can benefit from a prenup. The most basic of these contracts lists an inventory of premarital assets that in the event of a divorce will remain the property of their original owner.
At its core, a marriage is a contractual agreement, so to enter one without protecting yourself is irresponsible. According to the New York Times, millennials have at least gotten the message. Susan Shain writes that more millennials are getting prenups than their predecessors.
Though it’s easy to think of a prenuptial agreement as a 'divorce contract,' many legal and financial experts view it as a smart business move.
'It’s such a good idea to go into the marriage understanding that—while it’s first and foremost a romantic relationship — it’s also a financial and legal relationship,' said Charley Moore, founder and chief executive of Rocket Lawyer.
In order for a marriage to survive, love must be prioritized over of the business side of things. Let's not forget that time Charlotte was presented with a prenup in "Sex and the City." Who could forget the look on her face when fiancé Trey handed her the sheet of paper? Utter bewilderment–and for good reason.
Marriage is a contract, but a unique one. Looking at it momentarily without emotion in order to "protect" your future is, in a way, ensuring that that negative future comes true. Huffpost's Kagel explains her thinking:
...if we've contemplated the alternative, if we've thought about what we would get and what our life would be like were we to get a divorce, we've planted a seed that can only grow with attention and thought.