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Marriage agreements: Will a prenuptial agreement kill romance?

When a relationship is new, a couple is starry-eyed in love. Everything is going so well, they get engaged and then ... bam ... one of the partners brings up a prenuptial agreement. When it comes to marriage agreements in Ontario, the prenup, as it is usually called, has a bad rap of being a killer of romance. But many couples are realizing that doesn't have to be the case and that a marriage contract can benefit both individuals. 

The bottom line is that a prenuptial agreement stipulates who gets what should a marriage end in divorce. Seeing that in many cases, a divorce can wreak financial havoc in the lives of the couple, it makes sense to have a marital agreement in place before saying I do. The document has yet to catch on, however, since only about 8 per cent of married Canadians have one.

That's not to say they shouldn't, especially if many assets are at stake. For instance, if a couple co-own a business, it is important to outline the particulars regarding the business in either a prenuptial agreement or a marriage contract. Such a contract protects not only the couple, but anyone who has a financial interest in the business. Prenuptial agreements also make sense for those getting married for the second (or more) time since a blended family could be part of the scenario in this instance.

There are many issues that go along with marriage agreements. An Ontario lawyer can answer any queries regarding how these contracts can benefit a client's particular situation. It may be best for everyone who is affected by a marriage that either a prenuptial agreement or a marriage contract is signed in case of unforeseen events like divorce.



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