Why younger couples are starting to embrace prenups

A study has found Millennials are more open to prenuptial agreements than their parents were.

It wasn't too long ago when many marriage contracts, especially prenuptial agreements, were considered taboo. Such agreements, the thinking often went, suggested that a couple's relationship must be shaky at best. In recent years, however, that attitude has shifted, with young people in particular embracing prenuptial agreements and marriage contracts as a practical way of protecting not just their own but their family's best interests. Below is a look at why prenuptial agreements are suddenly popular with young couples and how they can benefit anybody who is getting married regardless of age.

Millennials open to prenuptial agreements

As CBC News reports, prenuptial agreements have grown particularly popular with younger newlyweds. A recent study by the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers found a significant increase in newly married couples who are aged 18 to 35 getting prenuptial agreements. While the study was American, family lawyers north of the border have noticed a similar increase in interest in prenuptial agreements by younger clients.

There are a number of reasons why younger couples are more open to the idea of having a prenuptial agreement in place than their parents were. For one, younger couples are getting married later nowadays, often in their thirties when they are more likely to have acquired their own significant assets. Furthermore, Millennials came of age during the 2008 Financial Crisis, making them more likely to be more practical about protecting against financial risks.

Right for any age

While it is good that Millennials are realizing the value of prenuptial agreements, it is important to keep in mind that such agreements are advantageous to newlyweds no matter their age. In fact, as the Globe and Mail reports, people who are on their second marriage and have children from a previous relationship should seriously consider signing a prenuptial agreement. The reason is to provide clarity over who gets what assets if the marriage ends in either divorce or the death of one of the spouses. A prenuptial agreement allows each spouse to make sure their children from a previous relationship receive the assets that were intended for them. Without such an agreement in place, those assets may be distributed according a legal formula that may not best reflect the wishes of either spouse.

Creating an effective agreement

However, for a prenuptial agreement to be effective and have the best chance of holding up in court it is important for both spouses to get legal advice beforehand. An experienced lawyer can help clients go over a prenuptial agreement they have been asked to sign to make sure it protects that client's interests. A lawyer can also help couples with drafting a prenuptial agreement that complies with all legal requirements and assist them with any other family law matter they may have.