Ask the Readers: Do You Have a Prenup?

Editor's Note: Congratulations to a2slbailey, lostAnnfound, and RD for winning this week's contest!

Getting married is oftentimes one of the best things to happen in someone's life. While most couples plan on staying together forever, sadly many marriages fall apart. Some couples recognize this and opt to sign a prenup before they say their vows. However, other couples avoid signing a prenup because they believe their love will stand the test of time.

Do you have a prenup? Why or why not? If you aren't married yet, do you plan on signing a prenup when you get married?

Tell us if you have a prenup and we'll enter you in a drawing to win a $20 Amazon Gift Card!

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We're doing three giveaways — one for random comments, one for random Facebook "Likes", and another one for random tweets.

Mandatory Entry: 

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Guest's picture
PK

Pre-nups are not the done thing for regular people in Australia. We tend to trust our would-be spouses. If one was rich, I could see how they might want a pre-nup - but what's mine is his and what's his is mine - and we agreed right at the beginning that we would take out of the marriage whatever we put into it, and split the joint stuff 50/50, no matter what. I would never sign a pre-nup, and I would never ask a prospective spouse to sign one, either. But then, I've walked away from a previous marriage (and a common-law relationship) with nothing but a suitcase of clothes, and I'd do it again if I had to. I'm not the greedy type...

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Chris S

yes I did because my wife was from another country and was requested by lawyer

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Chris S

like you on facebook

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Chris S

follow on twitter @cjsorel and tweeted
https://twitter.com/#!/cjsorel/status/161804159945936896

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rbee

(ironic background word congress)I have a pre ,present and post "nup" to be trustworthy w/ my spouse as we leave and cleave together.

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Jenn

no, we do not have a prenup. it was not even a consideration.

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Monica

No prenup for us, neither of us had anything when we first were married.

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Shannon

Nope, my fiance and I will not be signing a prenup. Neither one of us has significant assets, and we both come from humble backgrounds so we don't see the necessity in our situation.

Guest's picture

I do not have a prenup

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Monica

I also like wisebread on facebook. Thanks for the giveaway!

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Guest

Nope! We each had NOTHING when we got married :)

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Staycee

When we married, I was 21 and he was 24. We didn't either one of us have anything but student loans to our name so, no pre-nup! Didn't even cross our minds... we've been married now for 15 years.

I can see the necessity of having them if you marry later in life and have actually had time to acquire wealth. I do believe that a marriage should last forever, but am practical enough to understand they often don't so yes, you should protect yourself if you have money to protect!

Guest's picture

I would totally have a prenup if I get married. It's a great way to insure against you or your spouse becoming someone less nice.

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I like WB on Facebook

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I tweeted https://twitter.com/#!/junethomemaker/status/161825630479060992

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a2slbailey

No prenup. We married late (late 30's) and we're planning stay married, but if the relationship were to fail neither one of entered the marriage with substantial assets or debts, neither one of us anticipates significant inheritance, and we have roughly equal earning power. To me, it only seems to make sense to have a prenup if there is some significant imbalance in debts or assets, presently or anticipated.

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Christie

My husband and I do not have a prenup, it never entered our heads. There is no question that we will stay married, divorce is not even an option. We love each other, but most importantly, we are committed to each other and to this marriage each and every day of our lives. It is work, but we have been extremely happily married for 16 years and look forward to the rest of our lives together!

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Ashley

We do not have a prenup. Neither of us wanted one, and if anything were ever to happen (which we hope won't), we trust each other enough to be fair.

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rm

not married yet, but I plan on getting one

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Mrs Hancock

NO. In my opinion it is not moral to go into a marriage with an exit plan. Marriage is a lifelong, til death do us part commitment.
A good read about marriage is John Piper's "This Momentary Marriage". IMHO this book should be read by anyone considering becoming married or who is already married.

(I would hope my opinion on pre-nups wouldn't change id either of us had debt or more assets)

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Yvonne

No, we were teenagers when we married.

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lostAnnfound

No, we do not have prenup. Never really heard of it at that time.

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Elizabeth

No - we each came into the relationship with a very small amount of hand-me-downs. I think it would have cost more to have a pre-nup than the value of said possessions!

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Dianne

No prenup. Plan on keeping or vows til death parts us. If I can't believe my marriage will last, i wouldn't get married in the first place.

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Guest

I considered a pre-nup before we got married since I had lots assets and she had lots of debt. However, I realized, it didn't really cover much. Without a pre-nup, your assets and debts before marriage are yours, and your partner's assets and debts are theirs. If you don't combine debts or anything, they stay separate. Meanwhile, a pre-nup cannot cover alimony, and welfare of the child always takes precendence over pre-nup. So the only thing a pre-nup covers is money earned while you are together, or increases in investment value, house value, and that is secondary to child welfare and alimony. Since she wasn't so keen on it, and I didn't see much added value, we did not do a pre-nup. We've been married three years now and she's had lots of health problems. Given, if we split, a pre-nup probably would not have done much good anyway, since alimony would be involved, if we split.

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Krister

Nope, no prenup here. We were poor when we got married, and are still poor. 50% of zero is still zero :-)

Plus I know we'd both be level headed and resonable even if we ended up divorcing.

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Teeny

Nope no prenup for me and my husband. Neither one of use had any large assists or debts.

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Kristy OT

No. I consider marriage to be a solemn lifelong vow and would not have married my husband if he had felt differently.

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Guest

No, my husband and I didn't have a pre-nup, but we also had nothing when we got married. If I was ever to get re-married, I would have a pre-nup to protect my children's assets. It only seems fair.

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Betty

This made me laugh! I got married 26 years ago, and we were both broke. Happy to say we're still together, and finances are much brighter!

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Betty

Liked you and your post on Facebook.

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Happy Love

No. I read about it, thought about it, but did nothing more about it.

Once I verified that my fiance's debts from before the marriage wouldn't transfer over to me, I decided not to go to the expense of a prenup.

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Penny

Despite it being a 2nd marriage for both of us, we have no prenup. It never crossed our minds. Maybe the fact that I didn't ask my ex for any support despite the fact that I paid his student loans and supported us for 5 of our 6 years of marriage caused him to trust me. I didn't own anything worth protecting.

Guest's picture

I'm not married yet, but I'd happily get a prenup. I'm not really sure why it's even an issue.

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Stefany

I do not have a pre-nup.

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Stefany

I like WiseBread on Facebook.

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debbie

no...i trust my judgement

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DMG

I asked for a prenup because he has lots of debt and zero savings and I am well established. It did not go over well.

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Naomi

We do not have a prenup.

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Naomi

I also "like" you on Facebook.

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Gail Luther

We got a prenup when we married 15 years ago because we both had assets that we had worked for and wanted them protected. We also realize that at this point after two kids, the prenups would not probably stand up in court any longer. That's fine with us; we aren't going anywhere.

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John Corbin

No way! A prenup is almost admitting that you expect the marriage to fail!

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Jes

My husband and I decided against a prenup.

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Bryan

Nope, no prenup, some things are more important to me than my physical belongings, and this just seemed to put my stuff before my family.

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Selene M.

No prenup for us!

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Selene M.

I Like you on Facebook as Selene Montgomery

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Patrick

Nope, no prenup, but I did ask for one. I knew I was a saver and she was/is a spender. Although she has never been in debt, I wanted to protect my meager savings. She continually resisted, so I dropped it.

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Yan

No prenup. THough will be having one with my gf if we get married

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Lynda

just married 3 months ago and no pre-nup.

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Lynda

like wisebread on fb

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Lynda

tweeted https://twitter.com/#!/oshkoshbgosh123/status/161901174289735681

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Lisa

Nope. My long time husband brought up the subject of divorce once -saying that we could sell everything and split it half and half. I told him that I had a better idea - I could kill him and keep it all. ;-) (Kidding people...so don't send me hate replies!)

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Guest

Hi! I just liked you on Facebook, please enter me in your drawing. Thanks!

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Guest

When I get married I do not plan to have a prenup because we will be fully committed to each other and to our common life together.

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Therese

I think if you need a prenup, you should not get married.

Guest's picture

This is a romantic idea, and I wish it were actually the case. That's what lots of people think... until they get divorced.

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KelR1

No, I don't have a pre-nup. My husband and I got married when we were both 25, and we had no real money or assets. Plus we had been dating since we were 19 and lived together for a few years before the wedding, so we were confident we were staying together and had combined our finances for a while even before making it official. I'm happy to say that we're still going strong on our 15th year of marriage and, even though we have a little more money than we did back then, we don't regret skipping the pre-nup.

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KelR1

Like you on FB.

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KelR1

https://twitter.com/#!/KelRo1/status/161920088855937025

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gt0163c

I'm not married but I would not consider having a pre-nup. I believe that marriage is a covenant commitment made for life. The idea that the groundwork has already been laid to facilitate a divorce got against that belief.

Guest's picture
Ally

I'd consider getting one, though highly unlikely.

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Ally

Liked on FB!

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Ally

Liked on FB!

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Laura

No, though we went through the whole process of writing it. I highly recommend it, regardless of whether you plan to write it up or not. It's great conversation starters.

Guest's picture

We decided to have a prenup. In fact, my dad's wedding gift to us was covering an attorney's fees to draw up our wills and prenup. (He is nothing if not practical!) For us, it made sense. I understand the reasons both for having and for not having a prenup, but I think it's really important that couples have conversations about money, net worth, and long-term goals before the marriage. We've been happily married for many years now and lived in both the United States and Australia. Incidentally, the only issue that has arisen related to our prenup was related to immigration. U.S. officials decided that our prenup (along with our separate bank accounts) meant that we didn't have a "real" marriage.

Guest's picture

My husband and I did get a pre-nup, but we live in a community property state, so it's rather iffy anyway. It was a very awkward conversation, but we did try to incl. provisions, like it is supposed to be invalid in the case of proved infidelity.

Thanks for hosting the giveaway! Fingers crossed!

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I like y'all on FB!

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Ian

I'm not married and don't plan on getting one when I do. I already like Wise Bread on FB.

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Diana

Not married, but if I were, the BF and I don't have enough assets to make a prenup worth the legal fees. FWIW, we're lawyers ourselves. It would be different if we owned real estate, had significant investments, etc.

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Diane

I did not have a pre-nup when I married the first time. We had no assets and no need for one. However, IF I were to marry again, I would definitely have one as I now own a nearly paid for house and have 2 sons. My boyfriend has a business with business debt and 2 underage children in a community property state with forced heir-ship until age 25. Though I trust HIM, I do not trust the laws of the state to protect me, if he should die first. So I'm not taking any chances.

When my 1st marriage failed, I had to file bankruptcy for my ex-husband's business debt and was left with an IRS lien on my house. Years later, that's all cleared up and I'm not going through that again...

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Diane

I like wisebread on fb!

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Valerie

Nope. Neither of us had much when we got married.

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Valerie

I liked WB on Facebook!

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BuddhaLizzy

"LIKE"ed you on Facebook! LOL!! Just sent some articles to some parents who will most definitely enjoy the article on College Discounts....one in particular, my boss' daughter, is going to Europe this week for college...this may be worth its weight in gold!! THANK YOU!! I love this site!!

Guest's picture
Sara N

Absolutely not - we entered marriage with the same assets and will be married for life.

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RD

I absolutely do have a prenup. There was an unfortunate transaction where I loaned a lot of money to someone I loved. Turned out they weren't trustworthy. Prenups are protection especially when you don't have much in savings. They aren't only for the rich. We were married late in life so I set the prenup to expire in ten years from marriage. If she can stand me for ten years then it will be for keeps.

Guest's picture
jake

My wife and I didnt have a Pre-Nup when we got married, That takes away from the whats mine is yours idea.

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jake

I liked on Facebook Also

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Michael

I'm in this for the long run. No pre-nup here.

Guest's picture

My wife and I do not have a pre-nup. We both felt pretty strongly going in that divorce would not ever be an option for us, and we'll work through any difficulties.

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SFalta

No pre-nump. If stricken by some marriage-ending tragedy current family law rules are sufficient to protect the few assets I had before entering the marriage. Assets we gain together deserve to be split evenly, even though I'm the higher income earner.

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Ashley Labrie

Liked on facebook :)

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Ashley Labrie

Followed on Twitter :)

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Ashley Labrie

We created a prenup because we want our marriage to last. When people hear that, they say "But a pre-nup is for if you get a divorce?" Well, we consider it like a life preserver. It outlines all of our assets and where we were when we came together to start our lives. We put in a clause that we cannot seperate without counseling first. And it also requires that we split our marital assets in an equal manner. Some people might think that is crazy, but we think that is what marriage is--forever, no matter what. It gives us a reason to stay together, and not to walk away, beyond just the vows. But we are also realistic that not all marriages last, and what better time to focus on what is best for the marriage than when you are thinking of each other, and before things turn nasty with divorce? (We are both kids of divorce.)

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michelle

I understand why people get them, but nope!

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Raina

I'm not married, but I think a prenup is a great idea for my potential future marriage, with a clause about infidelity (i.e. you cheat, I take you to the cleaners).

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Margaret

No my husband and I do not have a pre-nup. When we got married 15 years ago neither we nor or families had any appreciable assests or funds. We still do not have anything that we would need to worry about retaining possession or authority.

Guest's picture
Priscilla

My husband and I both had substantial assets and no children when we went out our own attorneys and had an agreement drawn up before tying the knot. We had a pre-nuptual agreement drawn to keep our finances separate in a community property state.

The issue is usually that people go into with the best intentions but don't keep the assets pure. For instance one party owns the house that is lived in paid for with their own money, but both pay for maintenance, taxes, repairs, etc. People get sloppy as the years pile up and that is a danger. You have to be a good record keeper and go in with your eyes wide open. For instance in our case one person pays for the shelter and the other the other monthly expenses such as car insurance, utilities, food etc.

We were also advised by legals minds to draw up a full list of assets every year, with account numbers, and such to exchange. We do it every March including any debts owed and it has worked for many many years. We joke we are heading toward our fourth seven year itch!

We do not have children and see eye-to-eye on financial things such as spending and investing. We have in other words been raised with similar value around money and spending although we were raised half way around the world. We have a terrific lifestyle on not much money and love to travel modestly whenever we can get away.

We don't split dinner checks at the table when we go out with friends and most people don't know we keep our financed separated it's one of their business. Our bank accounts and statements say: John L Doe, as separate property, so I guess the mailman knows.

To be sure this doesn't mess you up when one partner dies will require an appointment at your favorite attorney so that you don't end up paying estate taxes because of your wish to keep assets segregated.

I think when one person has substantial assets and the other does not, or where there are children and step children or ex-wives or ex-husbands involved it is much more complex. My parents were divorced when I was very young and it was an utter disaster. My husband and I were together for twenty years before getting married and have been married successfully for many years now with only death as the anticipated end to all this bliss!

Guest's picture
Guest

We eloped 46 years ago and got married by a wacky justice of the peace who was relieved of his license to practice a few weeks after we tied the knot. We'd never heard of a prenup, and wouldn't have wanted one -- or needed one, since we were both basically broke when we started out. Prenups, it would seem, are for people with a lot of money or property to protect. In today's world, they're probably a good idea for some couples. But we've never needed one.

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Rebecca B. A. R.

Nope, we had nothing when we got married, and have nothing now! Don't see us ever needing one, b/c we don't plan on getting divorced.

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Dee Dee

No, have been married 33 years, I am not sure if I even heard it back then.

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Guest

We're getting married in a month and haven't even brought up the idea of a pre-nup. We have a very "what's yours is mine is ours" attitude toward assets, and neither of us is the type of person who would turn spiteful and possessive in the very, very unlikely event that we split at some point. Some people might find it useful to treat their marriage as a business arrangement (it actually is, to some degree) but we prefer to avoid too much legal apparatus overshadowing our relationship. Plus, a pre-nup seems like a sort of a self-fulfilling prophecy. I know not every marriage with a pre-nup ends in divorce, but there's a sort of defeatism built into it that turns me off.

Guest's picture
Jennifer

I will be getting married in 2 years and we will not have a prenup. If we had more assets, perhaps we would consider it.

Guest's picture
Mary

We actually have a ......... food prenup. Yup - just for food. I ate brown rice, fish, and steamed veggies when we met and he ate red meat, sausage biscuits, and gravy. We married with kids and we had to duke out how we'd handle food in our home.

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Thriftysahm83

Nope, I guess I am old fashioned and believe marriage is forever. It may mean I have to put a lot of work into it as does my husband but we're a team.

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Kim

My husband and I were married almost 30 years ago when we were 20 and 21. We had very little money, and probably didn't know what a prenup was at the time. Thinking back, we didn't even have anyone say, "You're way too young. What are you two thinking?" I guess it worked.

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Carmen

Not that we have that much money involved, but for us a prenup means you're already planning for the end of your marriage.

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Carmen

I like you on Facebook

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