British Columbia couples who are planning to get married may be considering a prenuptial agreement. However, for some, it is a difficult subject to raise at a time when wedding arrangements and love are the primary concerns. Advisors suggest financial goals and habits be discussed at the time when the relationship becomes serious. Being comfortable talking about the subject might make it easier to discuss marriage agreements as they approach the wedding.
When it comes to the drafting of a marriage agreement, the market value of the assets of both parties, their debts, expenses and incomes must be listed. Furthermore, any possessions that have sentimental value or that the person wants to protect for children from previous relationships must be specified. A prenup can also protect anticipated riches. A person who expects an inheritance of author’s royalties from books or songs written before the marriage can protect those assets in a marriage agreement.
Almost anything can be included in a prenup — even how household chores and finances will be handled, who will get the family pet in the event of a divorce and more. However, child-related issues can only be decided by the court. Another important aspect is that it may be best to draft a marriage agreement some months before the wedding, because last-minute agreements may raise the court’s suspicion that duress or coercion was involved.
While there are many advantages to drafting marriage agreements, they could be worth nothing if they do not comply with the legal requirements of the province. Using the correct legal language is important, as is proper knowledge of the applicable laws. The guidance of an experienced British Columbia family law lawyer may be required to ensure that a marriage agreement is drafted in a manner that will hold up in court if it is ever challenged.
Source: kiplinger.com, “A Primer on Prenups“, Jane Bennett Clark, Accessed on April 14, 2017