Thoughtfully crafted prenup can ease risks in a divorce

Though it seems counterintuitive, a prenuptial agreement can actually provide a framework for a healthy relationship. If the marriage does not last, then an existing agreement can help eliminate the risks that a spouse can face during a divorce. In spite of the negative connotation associated with a prenup, Louisiana residents who have one in place may have a peace-of-mind advantage.

The majority of couples often approach this type of agreement with trepidation as they fear that their intended spouse may be seeking only to protect their own assets in the event of a divorce. While that is often a main consideration, if the agreement is approached with a view toward strengthening the relationship, then the planning may proceed in a peaceful manner. Typically, the spouse with the greater amount of wealth seeks to ensure that a family legacy will be preserved regardless of what happens during the course of a marriage.

Some advisors suggest that the couple focuses on empowering both parties in different ways. They should focus on the three areas that most often cause the greatest amount of risk to relationships involving wealthy people: power, boundaries, and gifting and receiving. If they can consider these aspects during the planning phase and incorporate provisions in their prenup, then both parties may view agreement as a useful tool rather than a safeguard for a wealthier spouse. Wealth tends to create conflict in relationships, especially when one partner possesses a greater share of assets. A carefully crafted prenup can help balance out the power that each party will possess during the course of their marriage.

In the end, having the ability to agree on how assets are handled during a possible divorce can help each party feel that they have equal power -- regardless of the balance sheet each one brings into the marriage. A prenup will often shed a brighter light on the assets that each party will be bringing into the relationship, which ensures that each one has adequate information in order to protect his or her future interests. Louisiana residents who desire more information about these types of agreements may benefit from consulting an attorney who is well versed in drafting these types of documents.

Source:, "Prenuptial Agreements: Beyond the Necessary Evil", Keith Michaelson, Don Opatrny and Mark Haranzo, Feb. 7, 2018

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