The Secret to Protecting Your Assets in Marriage (Without Mentioning It)

More Couples Opting for Prenups to Prepare Finances Before Saying “I Do”

2 mins read
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Key Takeaways:

  • Over 60% of couples planning to get married in 2024 will consider a prenup
  • Younger generations view prenups as practical, not unromantic
  • Women appear more receptive to prenups than men

As marriage rates rebound following pandemic lows, an interesting trend is emerging amongst newly engaged couples planning their nuptials in 2024 – the prenuptial agreement.

While once seen as taboo or “unromantic”, the idea of hashing out financial details before walking down the aisle is going mainstream. Over 60% of those planning to get married this year will broach the topic of a prenup with their future spouse, according to a new survey.

The Driving Force Behind the Prenup Phenomenon

So what’s with the growing popularity of prenups? Legal experts cite a few key factors:

Getting Married Older

People are waiting longer to get married, often accumulating significant assets beforehand. “We’ve seen many clients want a prenup to protect assets they’ve built up as working professionals before marriage,” explains Rebecca Cockcroft, Head of Family Law at Payne Hicks Beach. “This reflects couples marrying a bit later and bringing more wealth into the union.”

Evolving Attitudes

Younger generations view prenups as practical planning rather than an affront to romance. The survey showed 76% of Millennials and Gen Z-ers are open to prenups, seeing them as “financially wise” regardless of income. “It’s no longer seen as unromantic, but simple financial prudence,” Cockcroft notes.

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International Influences

Exposure to how prenups are commonly used in other countries has shaped perceptions. “With how prevalent and uncontroversial they are in Europe, attitudes are changing,” Cockcroft states. The lack of legal standing for prenups in the UK remains an obstacle, however.

Women Driving the Charge

Surprisingly, women appear more open to prenups than men. 72% of women surveyed felt positively towards them as protection, versus 65% of men. According to Cockcroft, “This reflects women attaining greater financial independence before marriage.

Navigating the Prenup Proposition

Despite growing acceptance, trepidation remains around introducing the topic of financial planning. How can couples approach the prenup conversation?

Look Past the Stereotypes

Prenups aren’t just for the ultra-wealthy and famous. While the wealthy have long used them to protect assets, prenups are increasingly popular with everyday couples. Don’t let stigma stop an important talk.

Find the Right Time

Don’t spring a prenup on your newly betrothed unexpectedly! Have the discussion only once engaged, when you’re planning concretely. But don’t leave it until right before the wedding either.

See It As Romantic

View the prenup as a gesture of commitment and care for each other’s future wellbeing. It’s about ensuring mutual security in case the unimaginable happens.

Focus on Fairness

Work with lawyers on terms seen as equitable by both parties. Set the intention of reaching reasonable compromise. If one partner balks, dig into underlying concerns and find common ground.

Plan Comprehensively

Address all aspects of future financial entanglement, beyond just property division. Topics like spousal support and inheritance rights should be detailed clearly.

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Look Forward, Not Backward

A prenup protects what you build jointly during the marriage. Don’t let it become fixated on past assets. Focus on the future together.

Where There’s a Will, There’s a Way

In addition to a prenup, estate planning like wills and trusts should be revisited whenever life circumstances change. Stay proactive.

While prenups may never be an easy subject, they need not be taboo. Have the talk with openness, empathy and an eye to the future. With some care, a prenup can lay a foundation of financial clarity and “for better” in marriage.


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