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User Topic: new beginning requires prenup
chikastuff
Member
Member # 35288
Default  Posted: 11:06 AM, January 16th (Thursday)

Putting this out there because we've got such a diverse and sage group of people here.

**disclaimer** I'm not asking for legal advice or a discussion on the emotional side of this topic. I don't want to debate what it means to you or the ramifications of these agreements on the success or failure of marriage, etc. Because this decision isn't up for debate. However I would love some arm-chair quarterbacking support and insight from business and legal perspectives (again, not asking for ADVICE, just insight into the process, what usually happens, how to position myself, etc).

FI and I will have a premarital agreement. While neither of us come from money or have huge amounts of assets (just the house and our cars, which are all financed), FI owns a stable and growing business and substantial assets related to the company.

He has asked for one because he doesn't feel it's his place to make decisions for the company and his employees based on other decisions he's made in his personal life. The agreement will stand only to maintain separation between the business and our personal life. Our finances will be merged and while he owns our current home, future homes will be purchased together.

I feel it's my duty, both as the other party, a former BS, and as a mother, to ensure that there are some protections for me included in the agreement.

Example: In the event our marriage ends, he will have the company to fall back on. I theoretically could be a SAHM out of the workforce for several years, etc, and depending on how the agreement is written I could end up with no spousal support. I do know that prenups don't cancel out child support so in the event we have a child, that's OK.

I'm meeting with a fabulous firm next week. They specialize in family law and the atty I'm working on specializes in premarital agreements. He also specializes in post-divorce and custodial issues, which as we all know, come up from time to time. I'm hoping we will be a good fit. FI has his own representation.

Anyway, he asked me to take some notes and bring them to the meeting. I'm not sure what kind of notes he means, so I guess that's a good start. If you were in my position, what would you want to come out of this agreement where you and your children are concerned? what would you ask for? What questions would you ask the attorney?

And from a business perspective, shouldn't there be a way to legally separate the business from FI, the person, and avoid all of this personal bullshit?


Me- 32
Happily engaged and moving on

Posts: 382 | Registered: Apr 2012 | From: New England
ISPIFFD
Member
Member # 26367
Default  Posted: 11:24 AM, January 16th (Thursday)

I'm sure you'll get much more knowledgeable replies than this one, but as to your last question, I always thought the point of incorporating (or going LLC) was to separate the company and its assets from the person, so that if the company gets in financial trouble, the person isn't wiped out. I would think it would also work the other way that if the person gets in some financial trouble, the company doesn't get wiped out, which would seem to translate to potential divorce situations. But I don't know. By the time XH and I actually divorced, both of our companies had been closed down and liquidated so it wasn't an issue.


Me: BW (55)
Him: WH (62)
7/14/11 - Divorced

Posts: 1873 | Registered: Nov 2009 | From: another world
Undefinabl3
Member
Member # 36883
Default  Posted: 11:28 AM, January 16th (Thursday)

To me a Prenup is the "prepareing for the worst" part of the "hoping for the best" quote.

He has asked for one because he doesn't feel it's his place to make decisions for the company and his employees based on other decisions he's made in his personal life.

I am confused because you say this....and then turn around and add in a spousal support situation.

If the prenup only covers the business, then why would you need to work out spousal and child support as well.

Cant you just have a working document that states that the business will not be considered a marrital asset? I would think that a document stating that fact created by a lawyer and signed by the both of you would be all the documentation you need.

I theoretically could be a SAHM out of the workforce for several years, etc, and depending on how the agreement is written I could end up with no spousal support. I do know that prenups don't cancel out child support so in the event we have a child, that's OK.

If you can envision this, then i suggest that you put it into the prenup that you will get X amount of dollars a year for spousal support for the years that you were a SAHM in case of a divorce. So for every year you were a SAHM, then you would get 12,000 dollars (1,000 a month basically). It doesn't have to be that much, but you have to take out the emotions and understand that without a job, you will be up shit creek without a paddle, and child support will only go so far.

I feel it's my duty, both as the other party, a former BS, and as a mother, to ensure that there are some protections for me included in the agreement.

I would also then suggest that you place a adultry claus into your agreement. So that if he cheats on you, then the prenup is null and you can sue for half of his wealth.


The biggest thing with a prenup is that you can't really fathom at this point divorcing, so being able to think clearly about what type of situation you MAY be in and protecting against that is hard.

You need to take your feelings completly out of it and talk to yourself. "Self, if he divorced me 10 years from now....what would I need. What would I need if i had kids, if we had HUGE debt, if his business takes off and affords you a style of living you become acustomed too"


Me: 31 MH
Him: 37 MH
New online find 6/19/14 - shit

Posts: 1767 | Registered: Sep 2012
ajsmom
Member
Member # 17460
Default  Posted: 11:30 AM, January 16th (Thursday)

And from a business perspective, shouldn't there be a way to legally separate the business from FI, the person, and avoid all of this personal bullshit?

Not if he owns it and he shouldn't nor (total guess here) would he want to.

I'm sure the attorney you're meeting will cover that with you.

AJ's MOM


Fidelity isn't a feeling...it's a choice.

"Truth has no special time of its own. Its hour is now - always." - Albert Schweitzer
____________________________________________
Me: BW - Him: 200+ # tumor removed 7/09
DS - 31 - Yikes!


Posts: 21071 | Registered: Dec 2007 | From: Been Through Hell...On My Way Back
chikastuff
Member
Member # 35288
Default  Posted: 11:34 AM, January 16th (Thursday)

To me a Prenup is the "prepareing for the worst" part of the "hoping for the best" quote.

He has asked for one because he doesn't feel it's his place to make decisions for the company and his employees based on other decisions he's made in his personal life.

I am confused because you say this....and then turn around and add in a spousal support situation.

If the prenup only covers the business, then why would you need to work out spousal and child support as well.

Ideally the agreement would only include the business, however is that reality? I don't know, I've never been in this spot. For all I know his attorney could step in a say "you need to protect yourself more by doing x,y,z" and then instead of the business it involves personal stuff.

Cant you just have a working document that states that the business will not be considered a marrital asset? I would think that a document stating that fact created by a lawyer and signed by the both of you would be all the documentation you need.

I don't know, perhaps? Again, I don't know how this stuff works. That's why I'm asking.

I theoretically could be a SAHM out of the workforce for several years, etc, and depending on how the agreement is written I could end up with no spousal support. I do know that prenups don't cancel out child support so in the event we have a child, that's OK.

If you can envision this, then i suggest that you put it into the prenup that you will get X amount of dollars a year for spousal support for the years that you were a SAHM in case of a divorce. So for every year you were a SAHM, then you would get 12,000 dollars (1,000 a month basically). It doesn't have to be that much, but you have to take out the emotions and understand that without a job, you will be up shit creek without a paddle, and child support will only go so far.

I think expecting a former BS to NOT envision something like this is unrealistic and unfair.

I feel it's my duty, both as the other party, a former BS, and as a mother, to ensure that there are some protections for me included in the agreement.

I would also then suggest that you place a adultry claus into your agreement. So that if he cheats on you, then the prenup is null and you can sue for half of his wealth.


The biggest thing with a prenup is that you can't really fathom at this point divorcing, so being able to think clearly about what type of situation you MAY be in and protecting against that is hard.

You need to take your feelings completly out of it and talk to yourself. "Self, if he divorced me 10 years from now....what would I need. What would I need if i had kids, if we had HUGE debt, if his business takes off and affords you a style of living you become acustomed too"


Me- 32
Happily engaged and moving on

Posts: 382 | Registered: Apr 2012 | From: New England
Crescita
Member
Member # 32616
Default  Posted: 11:36 AM, January 16th (Thursday)

Maybe consider a lump sum payout en lieu of spousal support, enough that you would be comfortable and could afford private health insurance until you can get back on your feet. 1-3 years?

Whether you are technically involved in the business as a married couple or not, you will not be able to influence how he pays himself or runs the business in the event of divorce. You could indeed end up with little to no spousal support if he follows the trend and plays it shady.

That being said, I'm glad you have your own legal representation. They probably know a lot more about this than I do


“Happiness cannot be pursued; it must ensue.” ― Viktor E. Frankl, Man's Search for Meaning

Posts: 3454 | Registered: Jun 2011 | From: The Valley of the Sun
chikastuff
Member
Member # 35288
Default  Posted: 11:36 AM, January 16th (Thursday)

If the prenup only covers the business, then why would you need to work out spousal and child support as well.

Ideally the agreement would only include the business, however is that reality? I don't know, I've never been in this spot. For all I know his attorney could step in a say "you need to protect yourself more by doing x,y,z" and then instead of the business it involves personal stuff.

Cant you just have a working document that states that the business will not be considered a marrital asset? I would think that a document stating that fact created by a lawyer and signed by the both of you would be all the documentation you need.

I don't know, perhaps? Again, I don't know how this stuff works. That's why I'm asking.

I theoretically could be a SAHM out of the workforce for several years, etc, and depending on how the agreement is written I could end up with no spousal support. I do know that prenups don't cancel out child support so in the event we have a child, that's OK.

If you can envision this, then i suggest that you put it into the prenup that you will get X amount of dollars a year for spousal support for the years that you were a SAHM in case of a divorce. So for every year you were a SAHM, then you would get 12,000 dollars (1,000 a month basically). It doesn't have to be that much, but you have to take out the emotions and understand that without a job, you will be up shit creek without a paddle, and child support will only go so far.

I think expecting a former BS to NOT envision something like this is unrealistic and unfair.


Me- 32
Happily engaged and moving on

Posts: 382 | Registered: Apr 2012 | From: New England
lieshurt
Member
Member # 14003
Default  Posted: 12:07 PM, January 16th (Thursday)

Are you bringing anything into the marriage? 401k? stocks? any assets that would need protection? If so, I would address how to make sure those are covered.


Walk away from anything or anyone who takes away your joy. Life is too short to put up with fools.

Posts: 13809 | Registered: Mar 2007 | From: Houston
chikastuff
Member
Member # 35288
Default  Posted: 12:22 PM, January 16th (Thursday)

Are you bringing anything into the marriage? 401k? stocks? any assets that would need protection? If so, I would address how to make sure those are covered.

Very little, and business aside he's in the same position (though I have student loans and he owns our home).


Me- 32
Happily engaged and moving on

Posts: 382 | Registered: Apr 2012 | From: New England
ajsmom
Member
Member # 17460
Default  Posted: 12:23 PM, January 16th (Thursday)

But...he IS bringing the business into the marriage and therefore it should be protected.

I think when you meet with your attorney you'll have a clearer more accurate picture of the facts.


Fidelity isn't a feeling...it's a choice.

"Truth has no special time of its own. Its hour is now - always." - Albert Schweitzer
____________________________________________
Me: BW - Him: 200+ # tumor removed 7/09
DS - 31 - Yikes!


Posts: 21071 | Registered: Dec 2007 | From: Been Through Hell...On My Way Back
Undefinabl3
Member
Member # 36883
Default  Posted: 1:17 PM, January 16th (Thursday)

I think expecting a former BS to NOT envision something like this is unrealistic and unfair
.

I wasn't saying this to be unfair. I was saying that if there are scenarios that you could see happening, then you need to figure out how to protect yourself in them.

If the business can not be seperated from the marraige assets because he owns it, then the prenup will need to be as all inclusive as possible.

You will need to sit down and think "What would happen if he left me after 25 years of marriage" - Where would you be, what would you think you might need?

So you can't take his business...fine, but you should be able to still be allowed to have somewhat of the same lifestyle that that business provided for you.

[This message edited by Undefinabl3 at 1:18 PM, January 16th (Thursday)]


Me: 31 MH
Him: 37 MH
New online find 6/19/14 - shit

Posts: 1767 | Registered: Sep 2012
TrustedHer
Member
Member # 23328
Default  Posted: 1:56 PM, January 16th (Thursday)

Your attorney should know how this works in your state, but in general, assets brought into a marriage are considered separate unless and until they are commingled in some way.

A passive asset, like a stock portfolio, kept separate and never having marital income invested, will remain separate.

The business looks to me to be a special case, because he actively works at it, presumably is paid by it, and he owns it. His paychecks are most likely marital income, and the profits may be, even if he reinvests them in the business.

Your claim on the business profits is the thing I focus on. Suppose one year he takes 10% of the profits as pay, and you live in near poverty, and 90% gets reinvested in the business. Do you want to forfeit any claim on that 90%? In the event of a divorce, say he takes a paycut to 5%. Do you want court-ordered spousal (and child) support to be based on that, or the full 100% he and his business have actually earned?

My view of prenups is to itemize the pre-existing non-marital assets; in this case, his current investment in the business and the house and any retirement and investments. Then, to emphasize that growth in value of passive investments remains non-marital, and to hash out what happens to the actively managed assets, like his business.

Listen carefully to your attorney, and remember, this is business. Don't let your emotions drive you.


Take care of yourself. There's a great future out there. It won't come to you; you have to go to it.

Posts: 5181 | Registered: Mar 2009 | From: DeepInTheHeartOf, TX
Topic Posts: 12