Episode 2

Pre-Nup or No Nup?

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To sign or not to sign…how do you approach the dreaded pre-nup agreement? Everyone needs one because everyone has something, but it's not always that simple. Tell me how you've handled this tricky situation.

Your stories

  1. Prenup rules!!

    by Dave
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  1. Pre nup makes logical sense!

    by Don Over 50% of marriages fail, but probably 99% of people that walk down the aisle don't think theirs is going to. Any logical person looking at 50/50 odds would do a pre nup.
  2. Prenup rules!!

    by Dave I see people posting that they would withhold information from their partner when entering a prenuptial contract. YOU CANNOT DO THAT! In order for the prenup to be valid and enforcable ALL pre-marital assets must be spelled out in the prenup, including retirement accounts and pensions. If anything is left out the other party could claim fraud and take you to the cleaners.
  3. Getting married (domestic partnership)

    by Thomas Dear Judy Sheindlin, You are absolutely wonderful! You are brighter than anyone else I know (except my Grandmother who may have been close to your equal). I feel like we connect in so many ways. I'm from North Carolina and have lived in San Francisco for 10 years. My partner (of 5 years) and have 3 little dogs, very similar to yours. My Dad watches you every day, and I record all your shows. Sometimes I wish I was there to help you in your courtroom. :) I'm a psychiatrist and am "marrying" my partner within the next few months. It's not legal for same sex couples to marry in California, so we're doing a domestic partnership. He's a great guy, and has about as many assets as I do, but he isn't quite as good with his money. We plan to do a pre-nup, trust, will, and I'll put half of my house in his name (with him contributing to it). Very, very best wishes to you, Thomas
  4. He Made Me Do It!

    by Catherine “You want what? Just because your first marriage failed, doesn’t mean ours will.” I screamed. However, knowing that I had a pension at work that he wasn’t aware of, I decided he might be on to something, so went about the task. We agreed that credit wouldn’t be taken out secretly, that if one of was going to spend more than three-hundred dollars, that we had to call the other for the okay and then he let me have it. Sitting in front of his lawyer he said, “I only have to attend three family events per year, not to exceed four hours in duration and that includes our wedding.” Well, my head swung like the exorcist and the lawyer said it was enforceable. My intended went on with other requirements he had, then I started to add to the list; clearly we had to go home and talk a bit. My mother does throw a lot of parties. Once we understood the whys, we went back to the lawyers. Although the majority of it is not enforceable, it stands as written and made for great conversations.
  5. Dual PreNups

    by Bryce Why be afraid of having the guy or gal get mad if the subject is brought up? Just say 'let's BOTH get one'. We can do that, correct? That way BOTH partners will be protected, and everyone is 'happy happy happy' :D
  6. Grueling Divorces = Pro Pre-Nup!

    by Rita I do not have a story, but good advice. My fiancé wanted a pre-nup and he stated that it was best to discuss the issues now since we are in love and on speaking terms, than to wait until we are in a difficult situation, not speaking and hating one another. We were both married before and have children from previous marriages. We both have experienced grueling divorces with people that were unapproachable. A pre-nup is to protect what you have and what you are bringing to the table. Anything acquired during the marriage can be divided equally if the marriage goes sour! A pre-nup is only used if the marriage does not work out. In my first marriage I was in love, l loved doing things to make my Ex happy, then I was doing things that would not make him angry, finally I was doing things to piss him off. Nothing worked and I was DONE!!! I was blessed that I was able to end the marriage and keep what I worked so hard for only because he was a proclaimed abusive partner and I was prepared!!
  7. Pre-Nup Definitely YES with a big BUT....lol

    by Bridgette I would want a pre-nup saying that I get half of all his assets including social security and anything else he owned. If he was married previously and had kids I'd want him to spell out exactly what I'd get so I wouldn't have to argue with any children from previous marriages. I think they deserve to not have to argue with a stranger who comes into their Dad's life later. Pre-nups can be more than a way to screw women over after the guy gets tired of her.
  8. Pro-Prenup!

    by Huge Judge Judy Fan! Hi Judge Judy! I was young and naive when I married, so I did not even consider a prenup. After divorce proceedings, my ex admitted that his mother was pushing him to file for alimony on a settlement that I had received from a car accident that occured long before the marriage. I realize he probably would not have won the case, but I can only imagine what the lawyer fees would have been. I have been perfectly clear with the man I am dating now that if I were ever to remarry, it would be after a prenup. He would also not find out about the settlement until the after the prenup as well. Keep doing the wonderful work you do! I am a huge fan and wish there were more strong, smart women like you out there for the younger generations to look up to. I work at a Juvenile Justice program for girls, so I can definately tell you that good female role-models are lacking in our society.
  9. Get Real!

    by Michael The days of getting married and it lasting forever are over unfortunately. With a divorce rate of over 50% you should get a pre-nup even if you make $10,000 a year. It protects you.
  10. I refused to even consider one! (unfortunately)

    by Sharon My husband had a terribly vindictive ex-wife. I refused to even consider a pre-nup despite my family advising I did so. I said I would NOT start my marriage planning for a divorce. Maybe in hindsight that was a mistake. When we bought a house, my husbands ex called me up and said if he died, the house would be hers because it could never belong to me. Our lawyer had to refute this - cost. We got a letter from her lawyer stating that his pension had to go to her in event of death (this was not part of the divorce). Again, expense and lawyers to refute. When we paid private school fees - yes the letter again stating out rules etc. It went on and on and on and on. We spent a lot of money defining wills etc which would not have been necessary with a pre-nup. With hindsight, it would have been easier to define these things up front rather than dealing with threatening letters for years on end.
  11. Pre-Nup YES

    by Dianne My husband and I have been married 19 years and I wanted a pre nup. He has children from a former marriage, and there are antiques and momentos that need to stay in his blood family. I also have antiques that I want to remain in my family name. With the pre nup there is NO fighting on who gets what. Simple.
  12. Happily Ever After?

    by Cheyenne The future can hold so many different paths, and no one knows for sure which path they end up taking. You get to choose some turns, but never the twists. How could anyone, in our day and age, where we hear that over 50% of marriages end in divorce, still think that a marriage between two people who love each other can never end? Life isn't a fairy tale. Happily ever after is a rare, rare thing. Pre-nups are for people who realize that they have no idea what is going to happen, just like everyone else. When I get married, if I do, my partner will know up-front that I want a pre-nup. If he disagrees, then the marriage wouldn't last with me anyways. Thank you for the insightful question, Judge. I enjoy reading these replies, they give me a view of the other side. Not a bad thing, in my opinion.
  13. Bye Bye Beau

    by Kathryn Well, my boyfriend and I had been together for 12 years (yeah, I know - a LONG time) and we decided to marry. As the date got closer I became concerned. (I am a certifiable bitch when I despise someone, and I know this about myself). He's very wealthy, although he always downplayed it to others. I didn't want to be (at some future date) in a position where I could claim half of what he had. I explained that I was actually suggesting a pre-nup to protect him. He was obdurate & refused, saying it was planning for failure. I later realized that he refused primarily because it was my idea. If he'd broached the subject, it would've been different, but because he hadn't, he would NOT change his mind. He got distant, then testy, then we broke up. I figure it was largely because he thought about it, knew I was right, & could NOT admit it. We had started to grow apart anyway, so it was not that hard, frankly. If I'd been smarter, I'd have led into it so it could've been his idea. Mens' egos!
  14. No -Nup!

    by Lovie Cyrus When going into a marriage, the two parties should know that one of the first things about marriage is to have trust in each other, so there should be no pre nup. When I got married, my husband had serious problems with sharing but by reminding him of the statement "the two shall become one", it has helped him to get out of that selfish philosophy.
  15. PreNup - Absolutely!

    by Buddy I'm 65 and my spouse of 37 years is dying (no children). I know a have plenty of years left in me, so I wonder how will my life change, where will it take me? will I remarry? Possibly, but if I do, I'll protect the assets accumulated over those years so they can go to our families, not someone who I've just married!
  16. I was a fool!

    by Patti I was a fool. I married a man, who was an attorney and a 5-time husband. I became his 6th wife. Three years later...guess what??? Divorce(!!!), and he put me through the wringer. I had a gut feeling but didn't listen to it and now all I have is the wisdom to share with my grandchildren. Pre-Nup all the way!!!
  17. NO pre-nup; YES true love.

    by Lori Two of our three children got married this year; they are both in their early 20s. And yes- I know what you say Judge and clearly understand the value of your wisdom. But astounding as it is, both these couples have decided to keep their values and marriage vows just as all of their parents have. Life surely has ups and downs and marriage isn't any easier. When two different people think they each know best, it's all a matter of working together--communicating AND being a good listener. They all have said they are confident that if we (parents) can do it -their grandparents can do this, along with friends in our faith-- then prayer has alot to do with making a great marriage. "If it ever was a good thing, it's a good thing worth fighting for." Here are two couples who have SIMPLY PUT it...as No Nup. Call it maturity, good sense, or just call it TRUE LOVE. (Maybe it's good midwest values & it has something to do with their parents.)
  18. Til death do you part....but then again...

    by Wendy I don't believe in pre-nups you are supposed to plan to be together until death do you part. But here I am a widow at 45 years old, engaged, and feeling an intense need to do a prenup. At this age, if we did divorce and he took half of everything I had, I wouldn't be able to stay in my home (which is paid off) or retire... I am so torn on this subject... he really doesn't have assets and is a lot younger than me but should that mean set the tone of the marriage with a pre-nup?? I just don't know what to do. :(
  19. No Prenup..

    by Lissa We did not even discuss a prenup when we got married, as we felt it was not really necessary. All the assets we had, we acquired together (both did not really have much by way of assets, except that I had contributed all the money that went on the deposit for our house, but he paid the mortgage repayments to level that out, while I paid the other bills, groceries etc). My mother did tell me to maybe get something in writing about the deposit amount and if I had not felt confident it was not an issue, I probably would have considered it but two years later he has more than repaid the amount I originally outlaid and things are going well. For our situation, where not much by way of assets, it was not really needed I think but of course if you have a considerable amount or own a property whereas your partner does not, it is definitely food for thought and worth looking into.
  20. Statistics Don't Lie

    by Stefan Life is hard: marriage can be harder. When a high number of marriages fail (based on legal data), then we, as a society, must be realistic. Humans lie, either intentionally or not. "I love you" today, can become "What was I thinking" tomorrow. Human feelings are dynamic: money isn't. Some pre-nups may gather dust, and it is wonderful if they do: however, life happens and we should all be prepared.
  21. Not always a bad experience

    by Jill I was married for 7 yrs to the father of my two daughters. He passed away in 2003 due to medical negligence and I was awarded a very large judgement. When I informed my attorney I was getting married again she immediately said I needed a pre-nup. My husband to be had stated repeatedly that he didn't want the money, it wasn't ihis. My family insisted because they were afraid the girls would have nothing. So I told him that he needed to sign one for my protection and for the girls. He looked at me and said "Get me the papers, I will sign them right now. I want you and the girls, not the money" He signed them, even against the advice of his attorney who wanted to fight for something for him, knowing he would walk away with his car alone and we were married shortly after. We are celebrating our first anniversary this weekend
  22. Pre-nup enforces love; doesn't question it

    by Elda In a way if you really considered it, a Pre-nup is just a formal way of saying "I'm not after your things or money". If you truly love and respect each other, you' ll more than likely trust them with your things( like driving your car) and helping out with bills. You're not "dooming" your marriage, just testing to see if the person married you for you or your possessions. I'm glad my husband of 37 years married me for me ( and that's with a Pre-nup)
  23. NO on pre-nups!

    by Dawn First off, if you have to hide money or anything from a spouse, then you shouldn't be in a relationship. 2nd, I do not beleive in pre-nups. If your mate is not willing to share everything with you in a relationship, then you're not in a fully committed relationship and your marriage vows would be a waste of time and dishonest. If someone needs a pre-nup, that tells me right off the bat that they are insecure and question the relationship from day one..meaning, they simply do not fully trust anyone.
  24. My son didn't listen, we'll see...

    by Mara I didn't get a pre-nup when my time came because I knew I wasn't gonna need it; that worked out fine. But now my son got married, and I insisted he get a prenup. He married in a rush, so that idea went down the drain. They just married, and I am hoping they don't buy a house yet (he's Air Force active duty). I love you very much Judge Judy. You have no idea the many times I followed your lead in my life.
  25. Alleviate the Anguish

    by Winnie Well.. Judge Judy, since my husband of 27 years and I didn't have anything to start out with when we got married.. there really was no need to even think about a PreNup. However, if my opinion dares to count.. I do believe that people that have acquired many riches before they committed to marriage should definitely arrange a PreNup. It's just good sense. I believe that will alleviate a lot of the anguish later if there is a divorce.. :)
  26. "Gold Digger" is what a pre-nup suggests...

    by Michelle My husband's father is one of the owners of a successful, nationwide retail chain, so you can imagine the financial contribution he brings to the table. I, myself, am no slouch and bring plenty. I invested heavily when I was very young and married at 29. When my husband approached me with the pre-nup, I knew it was coming, but was still was pretty hurt. Basically, what that means to me, is that I am marrying him for his money. Far from it, I didn't even know about it until weeks before the date was set. I told him if he thought I was a gold digger, not to marry me. If not, don't marry anyone like that. We have since been marred almost 20 years and have two chidren. It wouldn't have mattered too much at this point, but in the end, I simply refused. He wanted to marry me more than the importance of me signing. Obviously, we have never spoken of it since. I work and contribute to the money in the house equal to his contribution.
  27. Sign it, file it, forget about it.

    by Barb A pre-nup ensures you come out the way you went in. You never truly know anyone and to think otherwise is being naive and dishonest with yourself. Sign it, file it and forget about it. Hopefully, you'll never need it - but I'm thinking with the 50%+ divorce rate....there's a good chance you will. And by the way, 2nd and 3rd marriages have a 70% divorce rate.
  28. Sharing 43% of My Military Pension for Life!

    by Don After 20 years in a loveless, one-sided (her way or no way) marriage, I decided to end it and move onto a much happier life. The sad part of this story, financially and legally speaking, is that I have to share 43% or $924 per month of my military pension for the rest of my life. I wish I would have known better in my early twenties and had a pre-nup to fully protect my future federal retirement benefits for my golden years. For those military service members who are currently single or married for less than ten years, I highly recommend you follow Judge Judy's advice and get a pre-/post-nup!
  29. Sign it and put it away!

    by Clayton I used to do contract work for a female attorney and her advice was & is: Sign a pre-nup, then put it away and go live your life. I've never been married so I've never had to really give the subject much thought. But I'm of limited means and I would hate to have to split 1/2 of my meager income in the event of a divorce. If it comes up I'm gonna want one most definitely!
  30. I don't see the value of a Pre Nup

    by Raymond I don't see the value of two people entering into a pre-nuptial agreement. I see these as nothing more than allowing one party to shirk their responsibilities AFTER the marriage has ended. There's too much tolerance in the U.S. today over people taking care of their business, and pre-nups only further those tolerances.
  31. Wish I had a pre nup!

    by Laurie I wish I had gotten a pre-nup before I got married since my soon to be ex wants major alimony even though I cannot afford it. It is not fair when he has not worked during our marriage. I have been the breadwinner. I had the education etc before we met. I am just so tired of his excuses of not working. I do not want him to live off of me forever. He is more than capable of working.
  32. No to Pre-Nup!

    by Kim I have heard "what you fear is what you create." I believe that if you don't trust your relationship, or the man you will make a life-long commitment to, then don't get married. If you do a pre-nup, you may as well state in there who is gonna do what chores as well.
  33. Yes! Pre-Nup

    by Denyse I've never married -- and I'm approaching 40. But, with age I've also accumulated a wealth of knowledge to know that should I ever decide to marry - having a pre-nup is not only smart, but a business imperative. See, I think it would be foolish to enter into a marriage based soley on love. Because Love is fickle and I've seen enough JJ shows to know that Loves doesn't make a marriage last! But, a Pre-nup may not sound 'romantic', but if I look at marriage as a joint business partnership that includes love and respect, then I think it protects everyone in the partnership.
  34. Pre-nup Yes

    by Jay My first marriage failed and the divorce and modification costs exceeded 200,000 between us. Needless to say, my second marriage, which has been the biggest blessing of my life, is great and a pre-nup is in place. For those who think that a pre-nup is a plan for failure, I say that is naive and lacks vision. If 50% of marriages fail, and you don't plan for that possibility, then you are naive. Doing a pre-nup is a good exercise in financial responsibility. It makes you and your future spouse have the responsible conversations needed to make a marriage succeed. When the number one cause of a divorce is financial, it only makes sense to hash out your goals and desires before you get married. It also makes both parties realize that they may need to have their own path in life. It makes you realize that you can not rely on someone else for your success. A pre-nup is like a life insurance policy. You don't want to have to use it, but thank God it is there if you need it.
  35. Yup Nup!

    by Crystal You marry someone for the person they are not for their things.You come into the relationship without their things and if the relationship ends you should leave without their things. Why would you want someone's things that don't belong to you anyway?
  36. Why?

    by Sarah Isn't a pre-nup just saying you are planning to fail at this marriage. You might as well invite the lawyers to the honeymoon just in-case things don't go so well the first night. No to a pre-nup!
  37. Here's a reason!

    by Mattie I lost my husband of 40 plus years to cancer. Eight yrs. later I remarried, both in our 70's. We had a pre-nup, not that I distrusted him, but my husband and I had worked 40 years to provide for our children after we were gone. Second marriage ended abruptly and I don't think it would have mattered if there had been a pre-nup or not, but what if husband #2 had gotten what hubby #1 and I had worked for all those years?
  38. You're in it or you're not...

    by Jessica My first marriage failed. Horribly. Terribly. It was on both of us. I had to learn my part in that, figure that out, not do that again. So that when it came time for me to fall in love again, I'd be the wiser. When the time was right, I did. As I am from the South, a place where we'd like to think we listen to our Mommas, and mine told me if I failed to trust completely, I'd fail to love completely...that they went hand in hand. She was right. Certainly, there was a hesitantancy. After all, I'd been hurt before. But to be loved, I'd have to love. To believe in him, I've have to make the commitment and know he would catch me. What I am really saying here is-- if you feel the need for a pre-nup, what are you doing marring them? If you don't feel comfortable enough with them with your money-- what are you doing with them in your house? In your bed? In your life? This shouldn't occur in this order. It should be the other way around. This is the natural part of marriage.
  39. A better foundation

    by david Every lasting relationship needs a strong foundation of understanding. A Pre-Nup seems like a bad "insurance" idea. It's better getting to know someone thoroughly prior to making a long lasting commitment. The more work put into something (relation, garden preparation, vehicle research, etc) and the readiness to accept change and be flexible is the best way to approach life in general. Although A Pre-Nup could be good insurance, it also tells your soon to be spouse that you have no long term plans for the relationship. Pre-Nups seem like an extra step toward a divorce. An event which can be difficult and resented by every family member.
  40. Pre Nup Common sense!

    by Jenni I was married for 14 years during which time a lot of my income went into "our savings". When we divorced, it was nowhere to be found-- maybe he was spending it on the girlfriends I finally learned he had. I put a lot into that marriage and got nothing when I left. I now own a house, have a considerable retirement acct, and have a house full of antique furniture. IF I marry again there will be a pre nup because even though I believe in love and will only marry if I FEEL it is forever I have learned that people change and I don't want to lose everything I have worked for. I am a very healthy person but have cancer insurance "in case" I get cancer, I have insurance "in case" my house burns down or is robbed, I took a self defense class "in case" someone attacks me, I lock my doors "in case" someone tries to get in, I don't expect those to happen but I cannot see the future and I do not have any control over what others do. I will protect myself and the property I have worked so hard for.
  41. Careful what you wish for.............

    by Lorie A former boss of mine (not at all an honorable man) was planning his 2nd wedding. While working together one afternoon, he confides in me (boastfully) that he'd been speaking with his lawyer about putting together a Pre-Nup. When the lawyer asked him how he wanted to put it together..........my boss responded with "You write it up any way you have to because you're the one who's getting me out of it when it all falls apart." If I'd known how to contact this fiance' I certainly would have. But I wasn't privy to that info.
  42. Smart Mother !!

    by Leslie Due to the extreme intelligence of my dear, sweet mother, God rest her soul, I don't have to worry about this. My choice of mates in my younger years was less than responsible. She left a great sum to me when she passed, but left it in a trust. I can't even get to it. It is overseen by a trusted CPA who is very fair and honest, so all of my living expenses are taken care of for the rest of my life. Anything frivolous, or not absolutely necessary for my health and well being are to be taken care of on my own. So, for all parents out there who question your child's ability to make wise decisions, I would recommend this. I am now 52, have a wonderful "manfriend" who I have been with for 6 years and money is not an issue. We have decided we will get married when we have some money, TOGETHER !! It's great.
  43. Marriage IS a contract

    by Deb Marriage IS a contract already (or used to be considered as one in our state). Depending on what state you live in (community property state or other), and what the judge decides will be final IF you have no pre-nup. And even if you have a pre-nup, it is a contract and can still be contested in court, right? I say this because I was divorced many years ago in a non-community property state (lucky for me) and I had assets in my name only. Therefore, my ex got none of that money. My father was an attorney and he advised me wisely!. I am still unmarried, but if I ever got married again, I would definitely have a pre-nup just in case, but I would NOT put my husband's name on any of my assets!
  44. Pre-nups are a must.

    by Frank In my grandfather and mother's day, marriage used to be a serious thing. From the time they said "I do" till the time they passed on. But today a person really doesn't know if the other half is in for the love or the money. Pre-nups will protect you from the greedy hungry other half who would do anything and I mean anything to say I do and then change their minds because "It's just not working out." No, no. Protect yourself it's not our grandparent's time anymore. Heed my words people. A pre-nup is the one true protection for life.
  45. 'Pig in a Poke'

    by John Being from the south, I'm accustomed to tall drinks and tall tales. My grandmother used to say, when I was caught "fibbing" as a child that I was trying to sell a "pig in a poke". I bring this up simply because when my aunt got married, her husband said he wanted a pre-nup. Now, being a southern family, we are all "set" in our ways, and my aunt was very hurt at his suggestion. She thought he was already casting doubt on the sincerity of their love, and wanting insurance over conviction. Now, granted he was a doctor, but in the end, wedding bells didn't ring for those two. She felt that if her soon to be husband couldn't trust her with his wallet, then she couldn't trust him with her heart. However, I often wonder what my aunt was truly in it for. Love never comes with guarantees, but commitment should also be considered a compromise, especially if one truly wants a beneficial partnership.
  46. Pre-nups affecting children

    by MDF Before my elderly mom married her elderly high school sweetheart, he had her sign a prenup. It was the best thing that could have ever happened to her and to us. She outlived him, but soon developed Alzheimer's. He had noted that her well-being and care were to come first until the day she died, at which point his children would receive their rightful inheritance. By taking care of her through the use of the prenup, we, the 'stepchildren' were spared the financial burden. When she later died, his children received their rightful inheritance. It worked out well for all concerned.
  47. PRE NUP Yes!

    by Bethanne Single until 45, I met a man I wanted to marry. I left home when I was 20. It was a poor blue collar upbringing, so I worked myself through nursing school as a waitress. At 45, an RN, I had a modest 1200 sq. foot home with a mortgage and no savings, but I was happy with my meager surroundings. The man I was about to marry was 5 times more wealthy than I would ever imagine, but I wanted the prenup! It was my idea! I just wanted what I had worked for, that's all, should our marriage fail. And it did fail in about a year. What a relief when everything was spelled out for the divorce. It was easier than I could ever imagine. But what helped was we kept everything separate. We even bought a home together 50/50. Repairs were 50/50. It was tough financially on me sometimes, but well worth it. in the end.
  48. Pre-Nup or No Nup ? Thoughts.

    by Kristy I don't have a personal experience to share, but have spent a considerable amount of time thinking of this situation...as I seem to do with many things. Is it still ok to just share my thoughts ? I hope so cuz here I go. I'll keep it short. I always felt that if a couple got married and started their lives together with both going into the marriage with about the same assets and debt, then it's not necessary to worry about the Pre-Nup thing. If a person meets someone who already has a substantial amount of worth, then I always felt it should be no problem signing a Pre-Nup. I can honestly say if it were me (the non wealthy one) I would offer up the Idea without a moment of hesitation. I feel anyone who is honest and true about their reasons for being there in the first place should not have a problem with this. I would however be smart enough to make sure that the financial gain that occurs between us in the time we are together is fairly divided in a divorce.
  49. UNTIL DEATH DO US PART

    by MCG If you take your vows seriously and you are in love for the right reasons , a pre-nup is unnecessary. A pre nup turns the marriage, supposedly based on mutual love and trust into a business arrangement.
  50. No Nup!

    by Ellegee50 This may sound old fashioned but you should know who you're marrying before you say I do. I do not believe in a pre-nup. I believe that marriage is forever and if the two people (adults) involved have come to the conculsion that the marriage must end, then they should agree on how to split the assets so that both can live as comfortable as they can and wish each other the best. I would expect nothing less from someone whom I once loved and loved me.
  51. Kiss of Death to your retirement finances

    by Karen I was married for 23 years and my ex-husband decided he wanted a divorce. I was the one that came into the marriage with money. But, after 23 years and No pre-nup, I therefore did not receive a penny of the money that I had before or contributed into the marriage. I should have requested a pre-nump or No marriage. Therefore, think twice and if the marriage lasts a life time then the pre-nup did not have to be used. Finance Insurance.......
  52. Pre-Nup=Sign of Distrust?

    by Carol I don't think so. Nobody that I know of goes into a marriage planning on getting a divorce a few years down the line. Having a pre-nup, in my opinion, isn't about not trusting the person you're going to marry. It's about trying to ensure that, should things not work out for whatever reason, you can part ways a bit more amicably. Hopefully, it would be in place like any other contract, to help eliminate a lot of wasted time, anger and energy fighting over who had what going into the marriage and who gets the family dog or cat, by having it in writing someplace beforehand. I don't see it as an issue of distrust at all. Just good planning for any eventuality.
  53. Had I known then what I know now...

    by Francis I would have gotten a pre-nup. I had a house and money in the bank, he had neither, and we live in a 50/50 state (CA). He has grown children from a previous relationship, I have no children. He has been cheating with other women throughout our marriage of over 40 years, and I just found out a few years ago! I am divorcing him, and I will lose a lot financially and he will clean up financially. I worked hard for my money and I am so angry, but when it is all over I will have peace. Hopefully, the women out there will learn something from my experience as women usually make less money on the job than men and don't fully recover, financially, if they go through a similar experience.
  54. Kiss of death!

    by JBW Hello, Judge Judy! This week, my husband and I celebrated our 30th wedding anniversary. When we married, we COMMITTED to becoming "one unit", if you will. I am confident that we never would have survived together if we started out with a pre-nup. I was a college student and my husband was a chief executive (he has since retired). I came with no material possessions, and he owned a great deal of real property, stocks & bonds and various other equity holdings. A pre-nuptial agreement is akin to shouting to the world that, "I may be marrying this guy or gal, but I do not trust this person in the least. So, just in case my hunch is correct I'm going to hedge my bet on this so-called marriage." Marriage is a very serious covenent, and must not be entered into without deep and honest soul searching. Why on earth marry anyone that you know you do not completely trust going in? A pre-nup is the kiss of death to any expectation of a true, long-term, committed married life.
  55. Why do we even entertain this question?

    by Mike Marriage is for life. Having a pre nup just gives people an excuse to give up on their marriage at the first sign of trouble. Marriage should not start with an escape route built in. Spend some time with each other, know who you are marrying, talk about the tough issues, then when you get married you know each other. There are marriages that fail, and that is unfortunate. However, as a society that already has way too many single moms and dads, we do not need to make divorce a natural thing to plan for. I believe that having a pre nup takes away from the commitment, and makes a persons vows meaningless. I don't believe in living together outside of marriage, however, if your going to have a pre nup that basically say's I am prepared to get divorced, why get married in the first place? It makes no sense to me.
  56. Older and Wiser

    by Amy In today's society, people tend to be older when they first walk down the aisle. This means more time to acquire assets ...and debt. I've worked very hard throughout my career and would hate to have to part with that due to divorce. There are many benefits of waiting until later in life to marry and I believe the wisdom of making sound decisions is one of them. A Pre-Nup in my opinion is a sound decision for anyone to have if they are merging their life with another person's. You wouldn't (hopefully) buy a house or a business or a car without signing paperwork, so how is this any different? I like the analogy that a Pre-Nup is similar to insurance. You hope you don't need it, but it's sure nice knowing it's there!
  57. Depends...

    by Kelly For myself and for my husband, a pre-nup was not really necessary. We did not come to the marriage or our relationship with much of anything. We both rented apartments, had older cars that were pretty much paid for...no pets. I think for some couples a pre-nup is a good idea, if one spouse has a lot of assets coming in to the marriage and their partner has little, a pre-nup can protect both. It will keep one from cleaning out the other and avoid leaving someone high and dry. If both partners have a fair amount they are bringing to the table, it protects them from losing those assets if things don't work out. I think the most important part of preparing for marriage is to actually take a marriage preparation class. These are required for some religious ceremonies but there are non-denominational classes out there as well.
  58. What are the statistics?

    by Blaine Are pre-nupped marriages more likely to wind up in divorce? It'd be interesting to see. My ex & I never had a pre-nup, but we never argued about money either & when we split up, everything was split reasonably. I know he received more of our community assets, but it was worth it to maintain a harmonious co-parenting relationship. Ten years on, we're able to sit together (him with his new wife) and watch our children graduate. That's worth everything to me. If we'd been the types to kerfuffle-this and snivel-over-that, we probably would have made out a prenup...and then spend ten years post-nup arguing about it in court!
  59. Pre-Nup = Think again.

    by Ha This one is so difficult because everyone's situation is different. However, if you are about to marry a person, there shouldn't be any doubt in your mind about the trust in the relationship. If there is any doubt, then you are only denying yourself of finding the real "one" by going through with it. Most people really know deep down inside, but many will still make immature decisions in the name of "love." If I had to sign a pre-nup before marriage, I would I would be marrying the wrong the person. Perhaps pre-nups are not the solution to solidify a marriage, but a heed to search deeper for the truth. If we put more effort into other things such as communication and the psychology of relationships, we can make better decisions from the start, thus building true relationships without the need for fall nets. Then again, we are so imperfect. See what I mean? Its difficult, and people tend to stay away from difficult things.
  60. Pre-nup? Yup!!

    by Carolyn B I talked with my boyfriend about the whole pre-nup situation. No, we are not planning on marriage. However, we were discussing Paul McCartney's divorce many years ago. I told him that a pre-nup is a good idea. But, it should be fair to both sides of the marriage/divorce. I would sign one. I don't see anything wrong with protecting myself or my spouse from messy divorce proceedings. Especially if one or the other of us has massive amounts of assets to protect. He thought that it was kind of funny. He said that I think like a guy...
  61. No pre nup for me!

    by Leslie I feel as though making one sign a pre nup is not necessary unless one person in the relationship makes a lot more money than the other, or is due to inherit a significant amount of money in the future. I had an ex boyffriend tell me if we ever got engaged he wanted me to sign a pre nup and I just felt like it was so impersonal and it turned me off! I understand that celebrities and people that have a lot of money usually have a pre nup agreement and I think that is the best thing to do in that situation.
  62. Love Love Love

    by Daisy If you believe in the kind of love that will last a life time, then you do not get a Pren-up. If you don't know what will happen down the line with either you or your partner (if there is no true belief) that things will work out, then definitely do the Pren-up. That's the story and I'm sticking to it! It's not magic, it's what you know about yourself and your views about life, love, and people in it. That's it!
  63. Pre nup or no nup

    by Mary It was the second marriage for both of us. He had two kids with his first marriage and of course child support. He never had money, I did. I lived with my parents, and I was very lucky. When we decided to marry, he quietly asked about a pre-nup. I really don't believe in them but I understand why people do them. Since I had more money than him, I quietly said "Ok, if you want one, but remember I have money, you don't, it'll only hurt you maybe someday!" He quickly changed his mind!!! lol
  64. Married Without One

    by Yolanda Well, I married without a pre-nup and am so sorry that I did. Then again, we had nothing at the beginning. I have older children from a previous marriage, and he has a child from a previous relationship. My kids went to college and work and are doing well. His daughter is a single parent and wants nothing to do with me, as much as I have tried to approach her, she avoids me. I am tired; so I gave up trying. I would like to leave something for my children and so does he. I feel I worked the most during our marriage, and I am slightly older than he is. I am in my mid-50s. I am getting tired but it seems that the economy is forcing late retirement. I wanted to go into business with him but that brings on other legal hassles, regarding which of the kids gets what if one of us dies or who gets anything if one of us goes. I wish I could just find a way to do a post-nup, if there is such a thing or a binding contract so we could build a business together. I am loaded with business ideas.
  65. Pre-Nup all the way!

    by Brenda I would definitely get a pre-nup! Most of the guys nowadays have at least 1 child and owe taxes or child support. I’ve worked very hard to get what I have. I do not want a man who I marry today (which I never inteng to marry again anyway!) to benefit because of me monetarily and leave me and my daughter with nothing. That would be sad. When death occurs, people change and money becomes the focus and people only want to take care of themselves and their own DNA. I have no intentions of letting that happen. For sure, without a doubt...Pre-Nup all the way!!!!
  66. Better-Nup

    by Roberta I am a sole believer in pre-nuptials only because these days marriages last two minutes with or without TRUST, LOVE, and HAPPINESS. It’s only fair to address this type of thing mainly because people change and have a bad spirits about them. Bottom line, if you have any assets worth protecting that you built on your own (before the other person became a part of 'your own') whether it's 'things'...houses, cars, etc or retirement savings, regulars saving, cd's etc you should visit the idea and be very candid with your "special" person about discussing your take on a pre-nup! 4 Sure!
  67. Pre-Nup or No Nup

    by Tammy I believe it's up to each individual, but for me I believe that a relationship is something that you shouldn't have a doubt about before you commit. I think pre-nups are a result of not trusting your partner. If you are dating someone, right then and there is the time to say...do I trust my partner? If not, then why be with them in the first place? Love, commitment, communication and trust are all part of having a very good solid relationship. If you dont have it when you are dating then the answer is to find someone that is worth your all.
  68. It should be a requirement to get married!

    by John I'm a fan of Judge Judy! I didn't have a pre-nup but am lucky enough not to live in community state like CA to lose 1/2. It's easy to say but the subject is very tricky to approach without being viewed as "cheapskate" or selfish (or worse: Are you preparing to divorce me?), especially for a man. If it's written into laws, then nobody has to question anybody's motives, and it will become just a "procedure" and people would be free to love their spouse.
  69. It seems you can't win...

    by Katherine My advice? If you have a pre-nup, don't tell anyone else about it. Keep it between you and your spouse. It's ironic that people will tell you to protect your interests, but the second you do, they accuse you of not trusting your spouse and urge you to rethink the wedding & marriage. Ours included clauses for infidelity, protected the home ownership, and decided how the money would be protected (he had assets, I had inheritance). And we also put in an expiration date. If in 25 years, we feel like we need another, fine. If not, it goes the way of the wind. And it makes it clear who the beneficiary is in the event one of us dies.
  70. My House!

    by Janet The father of my two grown children, we never married, wanted to try at our relationship again. We're both in our early sixties. Mind you he never paid a dime of child support until the law changed. He married, divorced and lost a home in foreclosure. He blames the wife. He has lived outside of his mother's home five years, two of when he was married. I know this because of tracking him down years to get child support. I own my family's home which I bought from my father. It's a nice house with a lot of potential to add on. He tells me he wants me to sell the house and buy another one together because this house is my house. If something happens, I can put him out. Pre-nups protects what is yours when you go into a relationship. It doesn't have anything to do with trust. I'm at retirement age and no way am I going into debt buying another house! He is back with his mother. My children or grandchildren will get my house.
  71. Hell hath no fury...

    by Judi The way the world is today, I believe prenups are a good idea. People think they know all there is to know about each other, but we can never predict what someone will do in the future when faced with certain situations. The old saying, "Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned" is very true in some situations. In relationships, whether the couple is married or not, when something goes wrong, these days we are hearing about people cheating or hurting their spouse in other ways and consequently run over them in a parking lot or super- gluing a certain body part to their leg(yes-in my town, this really happened once upon a time), then there is the famous case of Lorena Bobbit whom we all know what she did, so, taking these things into consideration, people should get a prenup. Because the ones who do not commit crimes of passion from being hurt can and will sometimes do or try to do other things to get revenge, one of which could be trying to wipe out a bank account, destroy a business, etc.
  72. Pre Nup Now!

    by Sarah Your question was "How do you approach the subject?" One word: IMMEDIATELY in the relationship. If one party isn't onboard with the pre-nup, and one party insists on it, then bringing it out early on in the relationship saves wasted time all around. signed, The Voice of Experience
  73. Sends the Wrong SIgnal!

    by Debby While I have never been in a position in which one was needed, I would find it hard to sign one. It almost seems like you're saying the marriage isn't going to work from the very beginning. If you don't fully trust the person you're marrying, maybe you need to reconsider things!
  74. Yes to a Prenup?

    by Linda I have been with the same man for over 30 years, married for soon to be 29, no divorce on the horizon for us. We've been through a LOT (his parents "the in-laws" and mine "the out-laws"). Much of the time I have earned more income than my spouse, while his Mom seems to "lend"/give my husband $. I find that the more I earn, the less he earns. Although we do NOT have a prenup and of course, similar to any type of insurance, once needed it's too late to purchase, most of our $ is commingled. On only ONE occasion, (a punitive legal settlement), I put the money in the bank in my name solely because I wanted "control of my destiny", so to speak. I have had a "difficult life" I'm told, so when I did a couple of things that I wanted to do (garage, fence, a couple of pairs of expensive shoes) it was refreshing to feel guilt-free AND enjoy getting what I want for a change, without having to explain and justify! YES to a credit check, prenup, AND STD blood test before a walk down the aisle!!
  75. Do it!

    by Susan The only person that will protect you is yourself, period. People get too caught up in the planning of a wedding that they let the heart take control of the brain. A pre-nup isn't a bad thing. It can benefit both people entering the marriage. It reminds me of an insurance policy, you may never use it but you have piece of mind it's there. I've never understood those that take offense when they are asked to sign one. If someone wants a pre-nup signed it doesn't mean they are thinking of a future divorce or they don't have faith in the marriage. And it certainly doesn't have anything to do with love, or lack of. Marriage isn't only about love after all, it's a major business owned by two people!
  76. Pre Nup Gift Giving

    by K.L. My husband and I just celebrated 20 years. This is my first marriage and his second. His ex took him to the cleaners, as he couldn't afford a lawyer (she even kept his high school diploma). Neither of us had anything to speak of when we married, so there was no reason for a pre-nup. I worried about what I would do if our marriage didn't last, I wanted to make sure I had enough to set up house if it ever came to that. So, at Christmas and other gift giving occasions, I would ask for one thing that I could use to set up house with; ie. a nice set of pots and pans, dishes, nice chair, washer/dryer, etc. While these are things every household needs or could use, I requested them as gifts so if the marriage didn't last, I could keep them. I did the same when buying gifts for my husband. After 20 years, I think we're safe, but should something happen, about the only thing we would need to fight over, would be the house and at this point, I would let him have it.
  77. PreNup Is Money in the Bank

    by Valerie I never thought I would marry but did days shy of my 36th birthday. No pre-nup but did discuss a post-nup but never got one signed. Days shy of our 10 year anniversary, we got divorced in the state of Texas (50/50). It was an amicable divorce mainly because he was mentally ill, and I did not want to rock the boat as he was still in a manic phase. I did end up paying him to leave along with alot of possessions to keep the peace. No children, a conscious decision. A prenup is no different from house insurance which I pay a premium every year > $750. I don't expect my house to burn down, or pipes to burst, but I am insured against that possibility. We survived the initial diagnosis, the job losses, seven yr itch but still our marriage failed. A pre nup is insurance. Get one. Love is great, love is grand, but a prenup is money in the bank.

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