Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

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HomerJ
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by HomerJ »

Professor Emeritus wrote:Ok lets take up the next question

When do you disclose you want a prenup?

Before you meet a specific person?
When you meet the person?
when you make a marriage proposal?
After they have told all their friends?
After teh wedding has been scheduled


Does it go in the wedding announcement?

Etc.

Exactly when do you have the most leverage in the contract negotiations?
Personally I think you should put it on your facebook home page. Saves a lot of time and heartache
Another awkward question is asking about previous partners, and if one has ever been tested.

When should that be brought up?

Before you meet a specific person?
When you meet the person?
when you make a marriage proposal?
After they have told all their friends?
After teh wedding has been scheduled

Does it go in the wedding announcement?

:)
chicagobear
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by chicagobear »

Momus wrote:
Yes, my parents will most likely give their assets to me since I am two "sons" in the family (stupid Chinese culture I know).
What do you mean by two sons?
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andronikus
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by andronikus »

To the OP:

A lot of the advice being given here is from people who have been married for many years (20+), and the advice they are giving is based on a relationship landscape (and social dynamic) that no longer exists. The modern American marriage can be a very dangerous place for a man in the U.S. The laws are not made in your favor, and the family court system is the last place you want to be deciding who gets what. Unless you come from a strongly religious/socially-conservative background where the "till death do us part" portion of the vow is actually valued and not just paid lip-service, you should see a lawyer.

Hell, If you asked the question, you should see a lawyer, period.
Professor Emeritus
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by Professor Emeritus »

HomerJ wrote:
Professor Emeritus wrote:Ok lets take up the next question

When do you disclose you want a prenup?

Before you meet a specific person?
When you meet the person?
when you make a marriage proposal?
After they have told all their friends?
After teh wedding has been scheduled


Does it go in the wedding announcement?

Etc.

Exactly when do you have the most leverage in the contract negotiations?
Personally I think you should put it on your facebook home page. Saves a lot of time and heartache
Another awkward question is asking about previous partners, and if one has ever been tested.

When should that be brought up?

Before you meet a specific person?
When you meet the person?
when you make a marriage proposal?
After they have told all their friends?
After teh wedding has been scheduled

Does it go in the wedding announcement?

:)
I assume since its a "business arrangement" that is all on the resume that was submitted.
Last edited by Professor Emeritus on Wed May 28, 2014 7:35 am, edited 1 time in total.
Professor Emeritus
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by Professor Emeritus »

andronikus wrote:To the OP:

A lot of the advice being given here is from people who have been married for many years (20+), and the advice they are giving is based on a relationship landscape (and social dynamic) that no longer exists. The modern American marriage can be a very dangerous place for a man in the U.S. The laws are not made in your favor, and the family court system is the last place you want to be deciding who gets what. Unless you come from a strongly religious/socially-conservative background where the "till death do us part" portion of the vow is actually valued and not just paid lip-service, you should see a lawyer.

Hell, If you asked the question, you should see a lawyer, period.
IMHO nonsense. Divorces, gold diggers, shotgun weddings and alimony ALWAYS existed in my lifetime. My FIL had a prenup in 1987. Kramer v Kramer (movie) was 1979.

I am sure wealthy men who want one can find a "hire by the hour" spouse. They have always been around too.

I used to have a girlfriend
known as Elsie
With whom I shared
Four sordid rooms in Chelsea

She wasn't what you'd call
A blushing flower...
As a matter of fact
She rented by the hour.


In Brideshead Revisited Waugh describes Rex
"He wanted a woman; he wanted the best on the market, and he wanted her cheap; that was what it amounted to."

So nothing is new.
Last edited by Professor Emeritus on Wed May 28, 2014 8:05 am, edited 1 time in total.
sscritic
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by sscritic »

andronikus wrote:To the OP: [who lives in California - added by respondent]

The laws are not made in your favor, and the family court system is the last place you want to be deciding who gets what.
I don't know what you know about the laws of California. Now perhaps you think your responsibility to your children ends at the point that you deposit your seed in the proper receptacle, but even if you do, a pre-nup with that as a premise will not stand up in court. An pre-nup with illegal conditions is not going to do you much good.

Do you know the standard for spousal support in California? For example, does it last for a lifetime? What is the stated goal of spousal support in California?

And once again, I have to ask if you understand community and separate property as they are defined and applied in California? If you don't know California law, why are you advising someone living in California? I don't know that you don't know California law, but since you made no reference to California in your response, I don't think you were really addressing the OP, in spite of the fact you said your response was addressed to the OP.
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XtremeSki2001
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by XtremeSki2001 »

tainted-meat wrote:I wouldn't marry anyone who wanted a pre-nup.

Either all in or all out is my philosophy with anything I do.
This. If I met a potential partner who wanted one I would know immediately they're not right for me - they're not committed as I am to the relationship.
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HomerJ
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by HomerJ »

XtremeSki2001 wrote:
tainted-meat wrote:I wouldn't marry anyone who wanted a pre-nup.

Either all in or all out is my philosophy with anything I do.
This. If I met a potential partner who wanted one I would know immediately they're not right for me - they're not committed as I am to the relationship.
I wonder what the actual stats are for marriages with prenups that end in divorce compared to marriages without prenups that end in divorce?

Also, the two of you might want to qualify your remarks a bit... Would a potential partner with kids who wanted a prenup to protect his/her kids be out of the question as well? More than one relationship involved there... I think I'd like someone MORE who was very protective of his/her children.
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by sscritic »

HomerJ wrote:
XtremeSki2001 wrote:If I met a potential partner who wanted one I would know immediately they're not right for me - they're not committed as I am to the relationship.
Also, the two of you might want to qualify your remarks a bit... Would a potential partner with kids who wanted a prenup to protect his/her kids be out of the question as well? More than one relationship involved there... I think I'd like someone MORE who was very protective of his/her children.
To XtremeSki2001: What if your spouse-to-be already has all their assets in a trust so you can't get at them? Does that rule that person out as a partner? I guess if you are after the money, it does.

How does an already established trust (kids or no kids) differ from a pre-nup?
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XtremeSki2001
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by XtremeSki2001 »

sscritic wrote:
HomerJ wrote:
XtremeSki2001 wrote:If I met a potential partner who wanted one I would know immediately they're not right for me - they're not committed as I am to the relationship.
Also, the two of you might want to qualify your remarks a bit... Would a potential partner with kids who wanted a prenup to protect his/her kids be out of the question as well? More than one relationship involved there... I think I'd like someone MORE who was very protective of his/her children.
To XtremeSki2001: What if your spouse-to-be already has all their assets in a trust so you can't get at them? Does that rule that person out as a partner? I guess if you are after the money, it does.

How does an already established trust (kids or no kids) differ from a pre-nup?
I recognize I'm oversimplifying my response for the benefit of the readers on the forum. I'm sure there are circumstances where it may be warranted. Presumably an already established trust was established before this fictional partner met me. However, I was responding to the OP's scenario which reads like it's two relatively young adults getting married for the first time without kids.
A box of rain will ease the pain and love will see you through
EnjoyIt
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by EnjoyIt »

XtremeSki2001 wrote:
tainted-meat wrote:I wouldn't marry anyone who wanted a pre-nup.

Either all in or all out is my philosophy with anything I do.
This. If I met a potential partner who wanted one I would know immediately they're not right for me - they're not committed as I am to the relationship.

I would never marry anyone who would not sign a prenup. If she refuses I would immediately know they are not right for me. They are obviously not committed to the relationship and just interested in the money.
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HomerJ
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by HomerJ »

XtremeSki2001 wrote:If I met a potential partner who wanted one I would know immediately they're not right for me - they're not committed as I am to the relationship.
Beckmaster wrote:I would never marry anyone who would not sign a prenup. If she refuses I would immediately know they are not right for me. They are obviously not committed to the relationship and just interested in the money.
What's interesting is.. both are very legitimate responses.

When my wife asked me to sign a pre-nup, I did have friends who questioned her commitment to the relationship... and I did answer with the opposite, "If I don't sign, doesn't that mean I'm not committed to the relationship?"
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by flyingbison »

XtremeSki2001 wrote:
tainted-meat wrote:I wouldn't marry anyone who wanted a pre-nup.

Either all in or all out is my philosophy with anything I do.
This. If I met a potential partner who wanted one I would know immediately they're not right for me - they're not committed as I am to the relationship.
Why get married at all then? If you are both fully committed to the relationship, you don't need legal recognition/protection of your partnership, do you?
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HomerJ
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by HomerJ »

flyingbison wrote:Why get married at all then? If you are both fully committed to the relationship, you don't need legal recognition/protection of your partnership, do you?
That's a very interesting point... Marriage is a contract... If wanting a contract means you're not fully committed to the relationship, then wanting to get married at all means you're not fully committed to the relationship.
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XtremeSki2001
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by XtremeSki2001 »

flyingbison wrote:
XtremeSki2001 wrote:
tainted-meat wrote:I wouldn't marry anyone who wanted a pre-nup.

Either all in or all out is my philosophy with anything I do.
This. If I met a potential partner who wanted one I would know immediately they're not right for me - they're not committed as I am to the relationship.
Why get married at all then? If you are both fully committed to the relationship, you don't need legal recognition/protection of your partnership, do you?
Without driving this discussion off on a tangent - there are religious reasons driving the purpose of marriage for some.
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steve_14
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by steve_14 »

flyingbison wrote:Why get married at all then? If you are both fully committed to the relationship, you don't need legal recognition/protection of your partnership, do you?
Right - was is the point exactly of tying yourself to another person with a contract? I can see a religious or cultural "celebration of love" ceremony, but why get the government involved?
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by istoner »

freebeer wrote:
Again "till death do us part" theory is balanced by 50% divorce rate reality.
It's amazing that people keep parroting this false statistic even after its falsity has been explained *in this very thread*. It's just wrong. It was once true when no-fault divorce first became the (majority) law of the land, and a glut of people who married super young a long time ago were finally able to get divorced after years of living in bad marriages. But that "divorce glut" has passed. For college grads marrying around the age of 30 the divorce rate is nowhere near 50%. It's probably less than 20%. http://psychcentral.com/lib/the-myth-of ... e/00011473 And that includes all the crazy ones who have gotten divorced 4 times and throw off the average.

On average, college grads around age 30 are very good at picking spouses. If you are a boglehead you are probably a wildly better planner than the majority of those people. Your chance of divorce is very very small. If you have found someone you honestly think you will spend the rest of your life with such that a pre-nup would be completely superfluous, you are probably right. If your gut is telling you you need a pre-nup, you should pay attention to that doubt.
HomerJ wrote:
That's a very interesting point... Marriage is a contract... If wanting a contract means you're not fully committed to the relationship, then wanting to get married at all means you're not fully committed to the relationship.
Aside from the fact that marriage is the act of making the commitment, there are numerous legal, social and (some believe) supernatural benefits to being married.
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by flyingbison »

XtremeSki2001 wrote:
Without driving this discussion off on a tangent - there are religious reasons driving the purpose of marriage for some.
Sure, but that doesn't require a legal marriage, recognized and protected by the law.
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by steve_14 »

istoner wrote:It's amazing that people keep parroting this false statistic even after its falsity has been explained *in this very thread*. It's just wrong. It was once true when no-fault divorce first became the (majority) law of the land, and a glut of people who married super young a long time ago were finally able to get divorced after years of living in bad marriages. But that "divorce glut" has passed. For college grads marrying around the age of 30 the divorce rate is nowhere near 50%. It's probably less than 20%.
Sounds like the OP's fiance is is well under 30. In any case, I don't think 20% vs 50% changes anything. There's only a .1% chance I'm going to seriously injure another party in a traffic accident, but I have a large policy anyway.
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by sscritic »

flyingbison wrote:
XtremeSki2001 wrote: Without driving this discussion off on a tangent - there are religious reasons driving the purpose of marriage for some.
Sure, but that doesn't require a legal marriage, recognized and protected by the law.
Did you find a priest to marry you without a marriage license issued by the state? I tried and failed.

P.S. I removed all the extraneous line feeds so I could add this extraneous P.S.
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by flyingbison »

istoner wrote:
For college grads marrying around the age of 30 the divorce rate is nowhere near 50%. It's probably less than 20%.
If 1/5 of homes in your neighborhood were burglarized, would getting a security system (or a big dog) be an unreasonable response?
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by flyingbison »

sscritic wrote:
flyingbison wrote:
XtremeSki2001 wrote: Without driving this discussion off on a tangent - there are religious reasons driving the purpose of marriage for some.
Sure, but that doesn't require a legal marriage, recognized and protected by the law.
Did you find a priest to marry you without a marriage license issued by the state? I tried and failed.
I never looked into it at the time, but when I was clergy I performed some weddings that were not legal marriages. My point, though, was that most people who marry for religious reasons also want the legal benefits and protections of a legal marriage, so it seems silly to protest the benefits/protections that come with a pre-nup.
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by Call_Me_Op »

Professor Emeritus wrote:
andronikus wrote:To the OP:

A lot of the advice being given here is from people who have been married for many years (20+), and the advice they are giving is based on a relationship landscape (and social dynamic) that no longer exists. The modern American marriage can be a very dangerous place for a man in the U.S. The laws are not made in your favor, and the family court system is the last place you want to be deciding who gets what. Unless you come from a strongly religious/socially-conservative background where the "till death do us part" portion of the vow is actually valued and not just paid lip-service, you should see a lawyer.

Hell, If you asked the question, you should see a lawyer, period.
IMHO nonsense. Divorces, gold diggers, shotgun weddings and alimony ALWAYS existed in my lifetime. My FIL had a prenup in 1987. Kramer v Kramer (movie) was 1979.

I am sure wealthy men who want one can find a "hire by the hour" spouse. They have always been around too.

I used to have a girlfriend
known as Elsie
With whom I shared
Four sordid rooms in Chelsea

She wasn't what you'd call
A blushing flower...
As a matter of fact
She rented by the hour.


In Brideshead Revisited Waugh describes Rex
"He wanted a woman; he wanted the best on the market, and he wanted her cheap; that was what it amounted to."

So nothing is new.
If you are suggesting that attitudes toward marriage have not changed over the past 50 years, I must strongly disagree.

There is no doubt in my mind that if two people today marry and one has much greater wealth, that person is taking a monumental financial risk - especially in the absence of a properly-executed pre-nup.
Best regards, -Op | | "In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity." Einstein
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by steve_14 »

istoner wrote:Aside from the fact that marriage is the act of making the commitment, there are numerous legal, social and (some believe) supernatural benefits to being married.
I don't see many practical legal benefits to marriage for the higher earning/higher wealth partner. Do you?
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by ThatGuy »

steve_14 wrote:
istoner wrote:Aside from the fact that marriage is the act of making the commitment, there are numerous legal, social and (some believe) supernatural benefits to being married.
I don't see many practical legal benefits to marriage for the higher earning/higher wealth partner. Do you?
Someone to parade around the country club. Someone to organize dinner parties for your business brethren. Basically, the socially expected counterpart to show that the higher earning person is an acceptable person to do business with.

Or, someone to clean the house/direct the maids, to take care of the kids/hire the nanny etc., freeing up the higher earning spouse to focus on earning more money.

Not to mention that married people tend to live longer.
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by Call_Me_Op »

ThatGuy wrote: Not to mention that married people tend to live longer.
But divorced people do worst of all health-wise. The principal risk in marrying is divorce.
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by FelixTheCat »

I happily married without thinking of divorce. I mistakenly commingled my premarital assets into the family trust. She got half.

If you do marry without a prenup.
1) Keep your current assets in your name only.
2) Keep any inheritance in your name only.

Personally, I would request a prenup. You can always will your assets.
Felix is a wonderful, wonderful cat.
istoner
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by istoner »

steve_14 wrote:
istoner wrote:It's amazing that people keep parroting this false statistic even after its falsity has been explained *in this very thread*. It's just wrong. It was once true when no-fault divorce first became the (majority) law of the land, and a glut of people who married super young a long time ago were finally able to get divorced after years of living in bad marriages. But that "divorce glut" has passed. For college grads marrying around the age of 30 the divorce rate is nowhere near 50%. It's probably less than 20%.
Sounds like the OP's fiance is is well under 30. In any case, I don't think 20% vs 50% changes anything. There's only a .1% chance I'm going to seriously injure another party in a traffic accident, but I have a large policy anyway.
I disagree with your ultimate conclusion because I think prenups are inherently damaging and indicative of a problems in the relationship, but I don't know that there is a lot of point in arguing that.

But even if 20 vs. 50 doesn't change anything for you (a) it might be worth considering for the OP, and (b) many people seem to rely on this statistic even though it is completely false and misleading. Wouldn't it bother you if people constantly said that the divorce rate was 2.5 times *lower* than the actual rate (perhaps 8%) in order to argue that a prenup is unnecessary? My guess is you wouldn't dismiss that incorrect belief so casually.
steve_14 wrote: I don't see many practical legal benefits to marriage for the higher earning/higher wealth partner. Do you?.
Yes. Many many of them. The enormous tax benefit to a marriage with disparate incomes is only the most obvious. Spend a little time on google to find many more. They are well cataloged in any same sex marriage debate.
Buysider
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by Buysider »

Your situation doesn't sound too special, I would pass on even thinking about it.

Should a divorce happen, I have seen colleagues go through $500,000+ in legal bills. If she hates you, she might not get the assets protected by a prenup, but her lawyer (and your lawyer) can!
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by EnjoyIt »

Actually if you are in the 39.6% tax bracket, being married is a tax liability. I have 2 friends who are getting married they each make $400K+/year, and they payed an extra ~$30K in taxes last year by being married.
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by sscritic »

Beckmaster wrote:Actually if you are in the 39.6% tax bracket, being married is a tax liability. I have 2 friends who are getting married they each make $400K+/year, and they payed an extra ~$30K in taxes last year by being married.
They obviously chose poorly. Just think what they could have saved by marrying two unemployed people. That's without even considering the inequality-not-to-be-discussed-as-it-would-be-political.
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by istoner »

Beckmaster wrote:Actually if you are in the 39.6% tax bracket, being married is a tax liability. I have 2 friends who are getting married they each make $400K+/year, and they payed an extra ~$30K in taxes last year by being married.
I'm not an accountant, but the situation posed was one where one person earns a lot more than the other. In that situation the higher earning spouse should get a nice tax break. I guess if you have two people with disparate incomes, but both earning more than $400k a year maybe there is no benefit (or even a detriment). That is a pretty unusual situation.
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by chocolatemuffin »

I don't know what to advise you, but for me personally, there are several times in my marriage that I probably would have pursued a divorce if it's easier. I don't know whether it's a blessing or not, but the fact that the escape route is so hideous probably forces me and my wife to work things through. There are bound to be problems in a marriage...

Suppose I am to start all over again in your situation, would I do a pre-nup given what I know about marriage now? Since there are no kids from previous relationships, I probably wouldn't go for a pre-nup. Actually, I probably wouldn't even get married unless I am so stupidly in love such that I am willing to give half my money to her anyways, no questions asked. However, I don't think anyone should ever be that stupid, so perhaps my recommendation is to re-consider whether to get married =b.
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by risingfish »

I was in a similar position to the OP. Ultimately I decided against a prenup because the default law seemed to provide sufficient protection for my specific situation. Premarital assets generally remain separate property so long as they are not "comingled" with marital property. It is important to research what constitutes comingling. Similarly, premarital debts remain separate. The OP also mentioned the possibility of a future inheritance. Inheritances received by one spouse remain separate property of that spouse -- again, unless comingled. I believe all of these points are true in community property states such as CA, as well as common law states. But please verify in your own state to be sure. As for assets acquired during marriage, in a worst case scenario the OP could get half (minus possible alimony and child support), unless of course the spouse is responsible for most of the future assets. Obviously there are many finer points to cover here, but this is my understanding of the basic framework.

If the default rules are unsatisfactory to the OP, then a prenup might make sense. But it's worth noting that even without a prenup, one can exercise some amount of control by walling off premarital assets. For me that was good enough, and I found it very challenging to invent a better formula that would make sense over time (although I tried). But this depends on each person's unique situation.
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by EnjoyIt »

istoner wrote:
Beckmaster wrote:Actually if you are in the 39.6% tax bracket, being married is a tax liability. I have 2 friends who are getting married they each make $400K+/year, and they payed an extra ~$30K in taxes last year by being married.
I'm not an accountant, but the situation posed was one where one person earns a lot more than the other. In that situation the higher earning spouse should get a nice tax break. I guess if you have two people with disparate incomes, but both earning more than $400k a year maybe there is no benefit (or even a detriment). That is a pretty unusual situation.
If one person makes $450K+ then each additional dollar that is made in the family is taxed at 39.6%. Also, Affordable care act tax kicks in at $200K when single but only at $250K when married. If you as a family are in that cut off range there goes another 2.9%. Also your capital gains tax goes up by 5% in that range. There are plenty of other tax consequences at lower thresholds such as a tax deduction on school loans and ability to put money in a Roth IRA.

Tax wise marriage is a loosing proposition for almost all income ranges above $100K.

And I agree with the statement above. Marriage is a personal decision between two people that may or may not have religious reasoning as well. Why is government getting involved? Please no one answer this question because we are not to talk about politics here.
A time to EVALUATE your jitters: | https://www.bogleheads.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=10&t=79939&start=400#p5275418
Professor Emeritus
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by Professor Emeritus »

steve_14 wrote:
istoner wrote:It's amazing that people keep parroting this false statistic even after its falsity has been explained *in this very thread*. It's just wrong. It was once true when no-fault divorce first became the (majority) law of the land, and a glut of people who married super young a long time ago were finally able to get divorced after years of living in bad marriages. But that "divorce glut" has passed. For college grads marrying around the age of 30 the divorce rate is nowhere near 50%. It's probably less than 20%.
Sounds like the OP's fiance is is well under 30. In any case, I don't think 20% vs 50% changes anything. There's only a .1% chance I'm going to seriously injure another party in a traffic accident, but I have a large policy anyway.
So you bought divorce insurance from a commercial company? Sounds good to me. or did you coerce someone with whom you claimed to have a relationship?
steve_14
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by steve_14 »

Professor Emeritus wrote:
steve_14 wrote:
istoner wrote:It's amazing that people keep parroting this false statistic even after its falsity has been explained *in this very thread*. It's just wrong. It was once true when no-fault divorce first became the (majority) law of the land, and a glut of people who married super young a long time ago were finally able to get divorced after years of living in bad marriages. But that "divorce glut" has passed. For college grads marrying around the age of 30 the divorce rate is nowhere near 50%. It's probably less than 20%.
Sounds like the OP's fiance is is well under 30. In any case, I don't think 20% vs 50% changes anything. There's only a .1% chance I'm going to seriously injure another party in a traffic accident, but I have a large policy anyway.
So you bought divorce insurance from a commercial company? Sounds good to me. or did you coerce someone with whom you claimed to have a relationship?
Neither, I just made an analogy ;) .
Professor Emeritus
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by Professor Emeritus »

steve_14 wrote:
Professor Emeritus wrote:
steve_14 wrote:
istoner wrote:It's amazing that people keep parroting this false statistic even after its falsity has been explained *in this very thread*. It's just wrong. It was once true when no-fault divorce first became the (majority) law of the land, and a glut of people who married super young a long time ago were finally able to get divorced after years of living in bad marriages. But that "divorce glut" has passed. For college grads marrying around the age of 30 the divorce rate is nowhere near 50%. It's probably less than 20%.
Sounds like the OP's fiance is is well under 30. In any case, I don't think 20% vs 50% changes anything. There's only a .1% chance I'm going to seriously injure another party in a traffic accident, but I have a large policy anyway.
So you bought divorce insurance from a commercial company? Sounds good to me. or did you coerce someone with whom you claimed to have a relationship?
Neither, I just made an analogy ;) .
ok is your analogy to commercial divorce insurance? or is your "insurance" calling Don Corleone to get you out of the record contact?
surfstar
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by surfstar »

Only marry someone who makes/has more money than yourself. Problem solved.

:D
Call_Me_Op
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by Call_Me_Op »

surfstar wrote:Only marry someone who makes/has more money than yourself. Problem solved.

:D
Correction : Only marry someone who makes more money and has higher net worth. :) For many Bogleheads, I suspect that may narrow the field so much that it approaches a null set.
Best regards, -Op | | "In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity." Einstein
Achelois
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by Achelois »

When my spouse and I divorced, we had been married 22years. I was the higher earner. My spouse was awarded all assets except my car, my clothes and $10,000. I paid spousal support and child support for three years. The explanation given to me was that, as the higher earner, I could more easily replace the assets. We lived in an equitable distribution state.

While I did not particularly like having to start over at age 44, it was essentially true. I could, and did, replace everything and more.

I am female. Historically, higher earners have typically been male, so it may seem as though men are "unfairly" targeted by divorce laws/rulings, but really it is higher earners. I was happy to provide support for my children. Transitional spousal support for my ex while he readjusted to living on his income alone was fair enough. He remains the father of my children, so I did not and do not wish ill upon him, financial or otherwise, because that would hurt them.

So many times, I see men posting that the ex-wife got "half of everything HE owned". No. Assets acquired during the marriage belong to both whether or not the wife worked. Even if she did not have a paying job and if, by mutual consent, she stayed home to raise the children or provide other support for his career, her contributions should not be dismissed as worthless. So, the wife got "half of everything THEY owned." The same applies if the sexes are reversed, though that is still less common.

That all being said, I think the OP should probably get a prenup. At the very least, it would prompt financial discussions. He should take steps to not commingle those assets. It may motivate the fiancée to continue to work and payoff her debt. I do not think OP should do that directly. The discipline of doing that will be good for her.
Calm Man
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by Calm Man »

Achelois wrote:When my spouse and I divorced, we had been married 22years. I was the higher earner. My spouse was awarded all assets except my car, my clothes and $10,000. I paid spousal support and child support for three years. The explanation given to me was that, as the higher earner, I could more easily replace the assets. We lived in an equitable distribution state.

While I did not particularly like having to start over at age 44, it was essentially true. I could, and did, replace everything and more.

I am female. Historically, higher earners have typically been male, so it may seem as though men are "unfairly" targeted by divorce laws/rulings, but really it is higher earners. I was happy to provide support for my children. Transitional spousal support for my ex while he readjusted to living on his income alone was fair enough. He remains the father of my children, so I did not and do not wish ill upon him, financial or otherwise, because that would hurt them.

So many times, I see men posting that the ex-wife got "half of everything HE owned". No. Assets acquired during the marriage belong to both whether or not the wife worked. Even if she did not have a paying job and if, by mutual consent, she stayed home to raise the children or provide other support for his career, her contributions should not be dismissed as worthless. So, the wife got "half of everything THEY owned." The same applies if the sexes are reversed, though that is still less common.

That all being said, I think the OP should probably get a prenup. At the very least, it would prompt financial discussions. He should take steps to not commingle those assets. It may motivate the fiancée to continue to work and payoff her debt. I do not think OP should do that directly. The discipline of doing that will be good for her.
Thank you for this post. For the sake of those who say they are so in love (I think one was named something like texas ag) would you comment on whether you were not so in love when you got married, or whether you were not sure your marriage would last? You sound like a well reasoned, thoughtful person, and yet , OMG, you got divorced.
stoptothink
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by stoptothink »

Achelois wrote: So many times, I see men posting that the ex-wife got "half of everything HE owned". No. Assets acquired during the marriage belong to both whether or not the wife worked. Even if she did not have a paying job and if, by mutual consent, she stayed home to raise the children or provide other support for his career, her contributions should not be dismissed as worthless. So, the wife got "half of everything THEY owned." The same applies if the sexes are reversed, though that is still less common.
Maybe I am wrong, but I don't think anybody was suggesting that there was some gender issue at play here; other than the fact that most of the members of this forum are male and therefore the former spouse would be a wife.

I will throw in my anecdote as well. I do agree that what is earned during marriage is community property and no spouse's contribution should be dismissed as worthless, but sometimes that doesn't make it any easier to swallow. In my case, I put my ex-wife through dental school. She wasn't a SAHM who did all of the housework or shopping, she was a student who did almost none of the household work (because she was focused on her studies, which was a necessity and an agreement between both of us). After 4yrs of marriage in which she had not earned a penny of income she left completely debt free, with a $150k degree I paid for which set her up to make significantly more than I do, a car I had paid for, half of everything we saved during that time period, literally all of the household stuff, and we then fought almost a year over my assets which I had accumulated before we were married (in the end, she didn't get a penny of this). I didn't get anything because she now had the potential to make significantly more than me. I should have better prepared myself; I came into the marriage with ten years of savings from a decade of LBYM and a career, she came into the marriage with debt and without current job prospects. I accept it now, but it sucked and set my financial plans back a decade (and pushed hers a decade forward).

At the time we wed, I would have said what many of the posters have; that if we were to divorce, I loved her enough that I would gladly give her half of everything. That a prenup was planning for failure and I should know my potential spouse well enough for that to never be an issue. You think you know someone, but people change and divorce brings out the worst in everybody.

I would not get married again without a prenup. I did get married again last November, she balked at first, but after a few conversations about it she began to understand why and agreed to sign it. I won't put words into the mouth of my wife, but I highly doubt she would say now that insisting on a prenup was in any way showing a lack of trust in her or our marriage.
istoner
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by istoner »

stoptothink wrote: Maybe I am wrong, but I don't think anybody was suggesting that there was some gender issue at play here; other than the fact that most of the members of this forum are male and therefore the former spouse would be a wife.
Thanks to both stoptothink and Achelois for their personal stories, which I find instructive, though sad. I wanted to briefly respond to the above comment: I think I agree with you as far as this pre-nup thread goes. In the last one, however, (locked) there was definitely at least one poster vociferously expounding on how sexist and punitive the "divorce laws" were to men.

To the substance of your posts, I understand loving someone so much you would do anything to marry them. I also wonder if either of you look back and see any warning signs (the value of 20/20 hindsight, of course, being what it is).
stoptothink
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by stoptothink »

istoner wrote:
stoptothink wrote: Maybe I am wrong, but I don't think anybody was suggesting that there was some gender issue at play here; other than the fact that most of the members of this forum are male and therefore the former spouse would be a wife.
To the substance of your posts, I understand loving someone so much you would do anything to marry them. I also wonder if either of you look back and see any warning signs (the value of 20/20 hindsight, of course, being what it is).
Of course there were warning signs. My ex-wife came from a family which appeared wealthy, but was completely broke. They were extremely superficial and although I loved their daughter, I was pretty shocked about their priorities and their dishonesty about it. The ex was too and vowed that she wanted a different lifestyle, and we spent a lot of time prior to our wedding making budgets and mapping out our future. But when it came down to it she really wanted those nice things. We split solely because of disagreements about finances; she wanted to live like a high-earning two income couple, while I was not earning a ton of money and putting her through school at $40k+/yr. Literally the day we separated, she went out and put over $1k on my CC shopping and booked a cruise with her sisters to celebrate her upcoming graduation (and maybe divorce). I should have known that the chances of her being an outlier in that environment were very slim, she was the youngest of 8 children and they all were that way, but I loved her and she told me she wasn't.
jhh9327
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by jhh9327 »

I don't see all that much difference in a prenup and something like deciding on the guardianship of your kids in your wills. Neither are required to have, but when put in place both take control away from an outside entity and gives it to the people directly involved to customize to their agreed upon viewpoints. Both also can be uncomfortable discussions with a spouse/future spouse that many just wish to avoid having.

I have both a prenup and a will and neither were all that pleasant to put in place, but still believe each were the "right" thing to do. My wife didn't like the idea of a prenup, though she understood why I felt one was needed and ultimately we came to an agreement. When it came to our wills, I'm not completely thrilled with what we say we want to happen with guardianship of our kids if we both pass away, but would rather go with the option we ended up at together than give no direction on guardianship at all and let someone else decide. Whether these documents are in place or not, someone is going to decide what happens if the unfortunate in life strikes.

Ultimately I'm glad that my wife and I are able to talk about difficult topics with each other even if we don't agree 100% with the other person. If we just avoiding having these talks because we don't think (or want to think) that they are ever going to happen to us, I believe it would be a disservice to our relationship.
BanditKing
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by BanditKing »

Seems to be the only downside is the stigma that it carries and the fact she might get emotional about it. Sorry, time to have an adult conversation before committing your lives together and this is part of it.

Get one. 1000% get one.
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TxAg
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by TxAg »

Calm Man wrote:
Achelois wrote:When my spouse and I divorced, we had been married 22years. I was the higher earner. My spouse was awarded all assets except my car, my clothes and $10,000. I paid spousal support and child support for three years. The explanation given to me was that, as the higher earner, I could more easily replace the assets. We lived in an equitable distribution state.

While I did not particularly like having to start over at age 44, it was essentially true. I could, and did, replace everything and more.

I am female. Historically, higher earners have typically been male, so it may seem as though men are "unfairly" targeted by divorce laws/rulings, but really it is higher earners. I was happy to provide support for my children. Transitional spousal support for my ex while he readjusted to living on his income alone was fair enough. He remains the father of my children, so I did not and do not wish ill upon him, financial or otherwise, because that would hurt them.

So many times, I see men posting that the ex-wife got "half of everything HE owned". No. Assets acquired during the marriage belong to both whether or not the wife worked. Even if she did not have a paying job and if, by mutual consent, she stayed home to raise the children or provide other support for his career, her contributions should not be dismissed as worthless. So, the wife got "half of everything THEY owned." The same applies if the sexes are reversed, though that is still less common.

That all being said, I think the OP should probably get a prenup. At the very least, it would prompt financial discussions. He should take steps to not commingle those assets. It may motivate the fiancée to continue to work and payoff her debt. I do not think OP should do that directly. The discipline of doing that will be good for her.
Thank you for this post. For the sake of those who say they are so in love (I think one was named something like texas ag) would you comment on whether you were not so in love when you got married, or whether you were not sure your marriage would last? You sound like a well reasoned, thoughtful person, and yet , OMG, you got divorced.
I'm kinda interested in the response as well. I've heard an awful lot of people say they had doubts but did it anyway.

Speaking solely for me...It's like I said: If my wife and I don't make it, I'm ok with splitting things in half. We did talk openly about our finances before we married, probably before we were engaged also. I had more...now we both contribute and she is the mother of my child. In no way would I want to see her or my child suffer. As a reasonable and thoughtful person, I took a "risk," but I'm ok with it. For the record, when we wed we had three degrees between us, were in our late 20s, had very good jobs, our parents aren't divorced, blah blah blah. Our situation was different than some and similar to others.

* I also claimed that I am in favor of pre-nups in certain situations. If I die, I want my wife to get a pre-nup before she remarries.
TheEternalVortex
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by TheEternalVortex »

lululu wrote: The failure rate for marriages is 50% - If you knew there was a 50% chance your house would burn down at some point, would you buy homeowner's insurance?
It's certainly lower than that. 50% is what you get if you divide the divorce rate by the marriage rate, but of course that's not the same thing at all. It's probably more like 40%, and lower for many groups: first marriages, those with a college degree, those with high income, those that have kids together after marriage, etc.
ajcp
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Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

Post by ajcp »

TxAg wrote:In no way would I want to see her or my child suffer.
I can only speak for myself, but there was one thing that always stuck out to me - and I'm a single, low income person so I would have to guess it worries some of the many high income people we have on this board. There's a big gap between not suffering and what the law currently allows. If one spouse makes 300k and the other got 50k support, sure I could see that. But (I only know about my state, but is there any state where this isn't true?) that spouse could easily get 6 figures. Except in the cases where the 2nd spouse actually had the potential to make 6 figures but sacrificed career for the family, that doesn't make sense. I don't know anything about pre-nup law except that you can't put something illegal in there, so I don't know if you could give someone that low of a percentage support, maybe someone else can chime in.
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