Prenuptial for future son-in-law - RESOLVED

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ceecee123
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Prenuptial for future son-in-law - RESOLVED

Post by ceecee123 » Sun Jul 07, 2019 10:53 am

My daughter is getting married in June 2020. She and her future husband will have completed two years of medical school by that time. When she completes medical school she will be debt-free. He will have about $300,000 in student debt from a combination of undergraduate and medical school obligations. My wife and I were always committed to paying for “productive” education with associated expenses but once the education was finished, our children would be financially independent (e.g. no help buying a house, etc.). Our future son-in-law’s family is business middle-class but have taken a “you are on your own" attitude regarding higher education for their children. We own the condominium near the medical school where my daughter currently resides and where the two of them will live after marriage. We will allow the couple to reside there rent-free, pay my daughter’s tuition, and also provide her the same monthly stipend until medical school graduation.

My wife suggested a prenuptial agreement for our future son-in-law. I think this is a good idea. We have absolutely no second thoughts regarding the character and suitability of our future son-in-law. He has put himself through school on his own, has great moral character, is hardworking, is frugal, and loves our daughter dearly. My daughter is similar in every way. Everything is perfect but we don’t want to be stupid about the $300,000 debt gorilla.

We plan on sitting down with the future couple soon to discuss the prenuptial agreement. They will have no advance knowledge of the topic of discussion. If our future son-in-law declines signing, I would tell them we now consider them financially independent. Most of the professionals I work with don’t provide financial support once their children are married. I think our son-in-law would sign willingly because he was surprised to learn my wife and I would continue to provide our daughter the same level of financial support until medical school graduation.

My questions:
1. Am I forgetting anything?
2. Do I need a lawyer or can I use a template? The prenuptial only addresses his student debt and nothing else. I don’t want my daughter to be saddled with his obligations if the highly unlikely (divorce) happens?
3. Will the prenuptial address address all of past and future educational debt (which are in his name only) or can it only legally include the debts he has accumulated up to the time of marriage?
4. Could he later SUCCESSFULLY claim he was signing under duress or claim he didn't understand the ramifications of the agreement. It seems to me that the "stressful" alternative is the standard situation (financial independence) most married couples find themselves.

Thanks in advance,

Cee Cee
Last edited by ceecee123 on Sun Jul 07, 2019 12:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.

MotoTrojan
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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law

Post by MotoTrojan » Sun Jul 07, 2019 10:58 am

What does your daughter think? If I were going into marriage with that kind of debt I’d want to feel like we were in it together to wipe it out. Not everyone’s parents can afford to alleviate that burden.

When will she graduate?

awval999
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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law

Post by awval999 » Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:01 am

He must have the opportunity to review with a lawyer. He would be signing under duress under your example.

I personally would not be the one to bring it up, it needs to be your daughter to bring it up. Put the ultimatum on her, not your future son-in-law.

mhalley
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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law

Post by mhalley » Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:01 am

You sitting down with future sil regarding a prenup for your daughter seems inappropriate to me. Maybe it’s just me, but this will have a huge affect on your relationship. I don’t see the need for one myself. A prenup is to protect assets, and there are none to protect. if you gave her the condo, then maybe. If she was not also going to be a dr, then maybe. This should come from her, not you. If you discuss it with her, and she does agree to ago forward, she should not tell her fiancée that the idea is yours.
For a prenup to be enforceable, both parties should have their own lawyer.
Last edited by mhalley on Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:10 am, edited 4 times in total.

SCb&b
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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law

Post by SCb&b » Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:03 am

I would be very put off if my in-laws wanted me to sign a prenuptial agreement in exchange for free rent for 2 years. Thanks but no thanks. You should offer advice to your daughter but stay out of their financial affairs.

runner3081
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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law

Post by runner3081 » Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:03 am

ceecee123 wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 10:53 am
We plan on sitting down with the future couple soon to discuss the prenuptial agreement. They will have no advance knowledge of the topic of discussion. If our future son-in-law declines signing, I would tell them we now consider them financially independent.
Personally, I feel that ambushing him with this (pre-nup talk) feels like a pretty horrible thing to do.

I would not come to the initial conversation with an agreement. If it is a big issue, bring up the loans somehow in another conversation and see where it leads.

What does your daughter think about this plan? Is she (and ultimately you) willing to lose the relationship (worst case) due to this? You never know how someone will react.

Scrapr
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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law

Post by Scrapr » Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:06 am

I think the other possibility is future SIL drops out of Med School with the loans still owing and takes a Barista job. Unlikely I'm sure. But man plans & God laughs

I have nothing to add on the prenup

EddyB
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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law

Post by EddyB » Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:09 am

runner3081 wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:03 am
ceecee123 wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 10:53 am
We plan on sitting down with the future couple soon to discuss the prenuptial agreement. They will have no advance knowledge of the topic of discussion. If our future son-in-law declines signing, I would tell them we now consider them financially independent.
Personally, I feel that ambushing him with this (pre-nup talk) feels like a pretty horrible thing to do.

I would not come to the initial conversation with an agreement. If it is a big issue, bring up the loans somehow in another conversation and see where it leads.

What does your daughter think about this plan? Is she (and ultimately you) willing to lose the relationship (worst case) due to this? You never know how someone will react.
If he were my son, I would caution him about getting involved with such a family.

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Nate79
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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law

Post by Nate79 » Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:11 am

I think the entire idea is absurd.

Wricha
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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law

Post by Wricha » Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:11 am

Yikes, sorry not your call. You are on very thin ice and it’s getting warmer quickly.

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Mlm
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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law

Post by Mlm » Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:12 am

I feel that you should talk to your daughter first. If you are trying to protect her from his debt your approach is totally inappropriate. Be very cautious.

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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law

Post by rebellovw » Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:13 am

Agreed - absurd - mind your own business.

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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law

Post by nordsteve » Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:15 am

If I was in their situation and my future in-laws sprung an ultimatum like that, I'd happily accept the "financial independence" offer and raise with "don't bother coming to our wedding" and "nice grandkids you never get to see".

Alternately, you might be saving the son-in-law from a difficult marriage, where your daughter is more dedicated to her parental relationship than her marriage.

In case you can't tell, I think it's a horrible idea. Once they're married, you need to a) think of gifts as being joint to them both and b) allow them to run their own affairs.

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Doom&Gloom
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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law

Post by Doom&Gloom » Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:15 am

Wow!

I agree with the others. Have any discussion you wish with your daughter and let her take it from there.

In-laws present enough challenges without a start like you have planned.

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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law

Post by frugalecon » Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:16 am

I thought a prenup was an agreement by which a married couple contracted around the default arrangements that the state provided them. The idea of a prenup between a person and his parents in law sounds strange. This seems like a good way to torpedo your relationship with the guy. If my FIL had approached me with this, I would not have reacted well. (Didn’t have a MIL, as spouse’s mom predeceased our meeting.)

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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law

Post by Momus » Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:17 am

While 300k is no chump change, prenup is pushing it for 2 MDs couple... I'd say forget about it. Most MDs make 250k+ avg, 400k is easy with some hustles/moonlighting. This is a chump change for the couple. It's not gonna break the bank even you know what happens. I don't see any need of a prenup FOR A STUDENT LOAN.

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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law

Post by mortfree » Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:20 am

Yikes!!

This is very business like.

And your financial support of the daughter screams “strings attached/controlling”.

Pre-nups are a good idea.

Your approach needs work.

Let your daughter handle that conversation.

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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law

Post by Sandtrap » Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:22 am

mhalley wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:01 am
You sitting down with future sil regarding a prenup for your daughter seems inappropriate to me. Maybe it’s just me, but this will have a huge affect on your relationship. I don’t see the need for one myself. A prenup is to protect assets, and there are none to protect. if you gave her the condo, then maybe. If she was not also going to be a dr, then maybe. This should come from her, not you. If you discuss it with her, and she does agree to ago forward, she should not tell her fiancée that the idea is yours.
For a prenup to be enforceable, both parties should have their own lawyer.
+100000000
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jminv
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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law

Post by jminv » Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:22 am

What you are proposing is an ambush of your daughter and her fiancé followed by trying to force him to sign on the spot without review by his lawyer under the threat of taking something away.

If I were your future son-in-law, you doing this would make me question whether my future wife had advance knowledge of this ambush, make me want to move us away from you, and just generally damage our relationship going forward. Your daughter probably won’t appreciate being put into this situation either. My parents in law never tried something this extreme but they have tried ambushing us with different things over the years. The end result is that we no longer live anywhere near them and our family sees them much less often than we otherwise would.

Bring it up to your daughter and suggest why you think it would be a good idea. Then she can decide what she wants to do.

Prenups cut both ways. You are concerned about his debt but there are no assets.

Use a lawyer to draft it when you get your daughter on board. Don’t try to ruin your relationship with them and make it worse by trying to draft it yourself and do it in the way you are proposing.
Last edited by jminv on Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:23 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Tamarind
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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law

Post by Tamarind » Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:23 am

Don't spring serious financial matters on people. I think that's a pretty good guideline for life.

If your daughter has absorbed your values, she'll reject this plan, regardless of what your future SIL is inclined to do. If it's actually your goal to end financial support for your daughter, which would be appropriate and timely, then just do so honestly, rather than forcing her to turn you down.

I don't see this not damaging your relationship with your daughter regardless of what choice she makes.

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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law

Post by Edward Joseph » Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:24 am

I think this will be very strange. What exactly are you trying to protect with the prenup?

The way I understand it, if he incurs the student loan debt before the marriage (this situation) it is not considered marital debt. If they divorce all the student loan debt stays with him.

From a practical standpoint, I think this is very awkward.I can't remember what the early 20's version of myself would do as the male in this situation but if i was approached with this now, i would turn away all financial assistance from my in-laws out of principle and go at it alone.

At the very most, the conversation to him should flow through your daughter and not from you.

(Side note- I know in America there are many different cultures from certain ethnic backgrounds where, as it pertains to marriage and finance, there is a lot more involvement and influence from parents and in-laws.)

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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law

Post by randomguy » Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:25 am

mhalley wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:01 am
You sitting down with future sil regarding a prenup for your daughter seems inappropriate to me. Maybe it’s just me, but this will have a huge affect on your relationship. I don’t see the need for one myself. A prenup is to protect assets, and there are none to protect if you gave her the condo, then maybe.
For a prenup to be enforceable, both parties should have their own lawyer.
The OP needs to go talk to a lawyer and see how 300k of debt is handled. I am pretty sure it isn't a joint asset and this prenup will do nothing. Honestly this sounds like meddling of a parent who doesn't have faith in their kid. Wonder what how the conversation would go if HE came asking for a prenup to exclude future earnings that are generated from that debt from being considered joint assets...

increment
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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law

Post by increment » Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:26 am

ceecee123 wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 10:53 am
Everything is perfect but we don’t want to be stupid about the $300,000 debt gorilla.
It sounds like your problem is that you don't want to feel stupid. To me this sounds like what (in tech only?) they call "the XY Problem": "The XY problem is asking about your attempted solution rather than your actual problem. This leads to enormous amounts of wasted time and energy ..."

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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law

Post by rebellovw » Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:27 am

Kids should be on their own for much of the cost and not have mommy and daddy pay for everything. Good for him.

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ceecee123
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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law

Post by ceecee123 » Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:30 am

Advice taken and will not proceed any further with the prenup idea. That is why I asked here first for advice before initiating anything. Thank you Bogleheads.

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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law

Post by Jags4186 » Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:34 am

Sounds like your future son-in-law needs to head for the hills. This won’t be the first absurd thing you contemplate thrusting on them. And maybe on the next ridiculous idea you won’t come here first to ask advice and get told you’re being ridiculous.

I’m afraid if this is where your mind runs then the marriage has two options—either your daughter will cut you guys out or the marriage will end quickly.

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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law

Post by NotWhoYouThink » Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:34 am

We plan on sitting down with the future couple soon to discuss the prenuptial agreement.
What is it that you would like this man and your daughter to agree to before they get married? How does your daughter feel about that?

As others have said, it is perfectly plausible that he will have much higher income after graduation than she will have, and will contribute substantially more to the couple's eventual net worth. Or vice versa. Hard to say what will happen.

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Sandtrap
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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law

Post by Sandtrap » Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:36 am

Doom&Gloom wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:15 am
Wow!

I agree with the others. Have any discussion you wish with your daughter and let her take it from there.

In-laws present enough challenges without a start like you have planned.
+++1111

OP: There's something to be said for the "intangibly priceless" human aspects of integrity, trust, respect, and appreciation . . . Things that can't be entered on a spreadsheet or a legal document. Things that we express to others, vs distrust.

How do we show our acceptance of this new family dynamic?

This new family dynamic, a family other than your own, is in its infancy, like a new sprout in a garden, vulnerable and vibrant. Whatever it takes to protect and nourish this new family dynamic, daughter and husband (married couple) in a wholesome and positive way, and actionably and substantively (not just words and reassurances. . . (since actions speak louder than words), should take precedent over any financial aspect given that there are not "Millions or Zillions" at risk.


*But, these things you already know.


Just some random meanderings from a multiple grandparent that may or may not be of interest or value.
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awval999
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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law

Post by awval999 » Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:37 am

ceecee123 wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:30 am
Advice taken and will not proceed any further with the prenup idea. That is why I asked here first for advice before initiating anything. Thank you Bogleheads.
Impressed.

And there's nothing wrong with saying something out loud to a trusted person or group. Sometimes, it's a great idea. And sometimes not so much.

orhkaf
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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law

Post by orhkaf » Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:37 am

300k to pay off for two docs wont be a huge burden. They have the financial resources to knock it out within a 2-3 year period. When my wife and I got married we sat down together and drafted a plan to pay off our loans with each others support. We never took the "that's you're debt, deal with it yourself approach."

Instead of recommending a prenup, it would be more constructive to lead them to bogleheads and give them a lesson or two about money management and investing. That will be much more valuable.

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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law

Post by mcraepat9 » Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:38 am

I think talking to your SIL about a prenup with your daughter is a mistake and is not likely to accomplish what you intended.

If your daughter wants (and needs) a prenup, she should have the courage to bring it up with SIL directly.
Amateur investors are not cool-headed logicians.

njinvestor2019
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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law

Post by njinvestor2019 » Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:39 am

I think the prenuptial is a great idea however, the approach needs work. Talk privately to your daughter about it and let her handle the conversation. Each party needs their own lawyer to make the prenuptial stick in case it gets challenged later on. Don't give up on this idea. It's ultimately your daughters choice. It the prenuptial you can decide how they will handle the $300,000 of student debt. Remember that the prenuptial must be fair to both parties.

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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law

Post by Sandtrap » Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:39 am

ceecee123 wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:30 am
Advice taken and will not proceed any further with the prenup idea. That is why I asked here first for advice before initiating anything. Thank you Bogleheads.
Great!

The wonderful thing about this forum is not only the expanse of financial knowledge and business experience, but the depth and variety of life experience. I don't know the bottom range of ages but I can assure you there's a plethora of those in the 80's and 90's. There's something of value in this sharing of mistakes and successes. AFAIK, none of us came into this world with a guidebook or operators manual stuck to our feet.

Good luck and congratulations are in order.
Think about grandchildren. :D :D :D
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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law

Post by TomatoTomahto » Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:41 am

ceecee123 wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:30 am
Advice taken and will not proceed any further with the prenup idea. That is why I asked here first for advice before initiating anything. Thank you Bogleheads.
I am relieved OP. Some of the responses were harsh, but I am glad that you took them with an open mind. :beer
Okay, I get it; I won't be political or controversial. The Earth is flat.

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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law

Post by zlandar » Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:42 am

If he is the upstanding moral man you say he is then you don't need a piece of paper reminding him of his debt obligation.

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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law

Post by rebellovw » Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:44 am

My last comment. I think the OP is very lucky that their daughter found this guy as they both can use their combined energy to complete school. She could have easily fell for someone else that could of dragged her down. Anyhow hope it works out for them.

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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law

Post by Watty » Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:44 am

Doom&Gloom wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:15 am
Wow!

I agree with the others. Have any discussion you wish with your daughter and let her take it from there.

In-laws present enough challenges without a start like you have planned.
If you do this don't be surprised if they take jobs on the other side of the country when they graduate.

There were various situations involved but I have know several situations where a parent became estranged from a kid and would go years without hearing from them. These were not dire situations like substance abuse either, just that there was so much strife within the family that the kid found it better to cut off communications with their parents either completely or partially.
He will have about $300,000 in student debt .....
Assuming that they both graduate and have high paying careers then he would still be paying off $150K of it on his own. In that case the most your daughter would be out was $150K if she ended up paying off half his debt.

There are permutations where either or both of them don't end up in high paying careers but in that case it is just as likely that your daughter ends up not having the high paying career.

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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law

Post by Ostentatious » Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:47 am

They would be medical doctors in the future. From what you say about their character, I think they would be able to take care of the $300K debt in a very short time, if they follow sound financial behavior. I wouldn't meddle in their affair after marriage in the future. It is up to you to decide whether to continue to help your daughter or not but leave them to figure things out themselves.

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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law

Post by drk » Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:53 am

Re-upping this from the OP so that new arrivals don't feel a need to comment:
ceecee123 wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:30 am
Advice taken and will not proceed any further with the prenup idea. That is why I asked here first for advice before initiating anything. Thank you Bogleheads.

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ceecee123
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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law

Post by ceecee123 » Sun Jul 07, 2019 12:01 pm

FYI. I will now claim I was "under the influence" when I came up with the prenup plan :D

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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law

Post by ResearchMed » Sun Jul 07, 2019 12:02 pm

drk wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:53 am
Re-upping this from the OP so that new arrivals don't feel a need to comment:
ceecee123 wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:30 am
Advice taken and will not proceed any further with the prenup idea. That is why I asked here first for advice before initiating anything. Thank you Bogleheads.
A brief clarification in the TITLE needs to be clearly visible, or folks will continue to think and post helpfully...

Something like, "Decision RESOLVED" or such.

RM
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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law

Post by abner kravitz » Sun Jul 07, 2019 12:02 pm

ceecee123 wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 12:01 pm
FYI. I will now claim I was "under the influence" when I came up with the prenup plan :D
No, your account was hacked. :happy

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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law

Post by CoastalWinds » Sun Jul 07, 2019 12:06 pm

It seems to me that your daughter is of an age where she should be allowed to make her own decisions without your meddling or unsolicited advice. Trust in how you raised her and her judgment. At this point, I don’t see any good coming from you still trying to proactively advise and guide.

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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law

Post by Doom&Gloom » Sun Jul 07, 2019 12:15 pm

TomatoTomahto wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:41 am
ceecee123 wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:30 am
Advice taken and will not proceed any further with the prenup idea. That is why I asked here first for advice before initiating anything. Thank you Bogleheads.
I am relieved OP. Some of the responses were harsh, but I am glad that you took them with an open mind. :beer
+1 to this and the other responses that the OP received to this post.

It is heartening to see such a reaction such as this on any forum. Probably because it is so rare.

Good luck, OP. I would relax and enjoy the approaching nuptials.

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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law

Post by Luckywon » Sun Jul 07, 2019 12:39 pm

ceecee123 wrote:
Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:30 am
Advice taken and will not proceed any further with the prenup idea. That is why I asked here first for advice before initiating anything. Thank you Bogleheads.
So glad to see you have decided not to pursue this. I was sure your family was headed for a lifetime of estrangement! Best wishes to you and your daughter-what a bright future they have!

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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law - RESOLVED

Post by ceecee123 » Sun Jul 07, 2019 12:44 pm

Thank you all for wonderful advice and tender sentiments.

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Re: Prenuptial for future son-in-law - RESOLVED

Post by LadyGeek » Sun Jul 07, 2019 12:46 pm

This thread has run its course and is locked (relationship issue, topic resolved, no added value to continue). See: Locked Topics
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