Welcome to 2020! The last decade included some groundbreaking victories for the Queer community-specifically concerning marriage equality. LGBTQ marriages are unique because many long-term relationships existed prior to marriage equality and so the inception of a committed relationship can predate the legal marriage by years and even decades. When couples say “I Do” they are forming a legal partnership with each other and have all the rights, benefits and responsibilities of marriage. The challenge for our community is navigating the premarital relationship within the context of the marriage.
Creating a prenuptial agreement provides an opportunity to establish and clarify rights and responsibilities for the relationship and in the case of the relationship not lasting. Couples can define property ownership, financial obligations, and debt responsibility and how property is distributed in the event of separation and death. In addition, couples in premarital long-term relationships, can define the rights and obligations of the pre-marital relationship in a prenuptial agreement.
Deciding whether or not to create a prenuptial agreement can be a challenging discussion. However, engaging in a conversation to understand each person’s perspective about the impact of marriage on their lives together, including property and property distribution, spousal financial support in the event of separation or divorce, and how to structure inheritance rights, can be beneficial to the health of the relationship going forward. Mediation and collaborative practice are natural process options for those considering working together to create a prenuptial agreement. Explore mediation and collaborative practice by contacting LGBTQI Family Professionals at [email protected].