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Same-Sex Couples Navigate Prenuptial Waters

November 18, 2016, In Family Law

While marriage brings love, excitement, and joy, it also can bring anxiety, stress, and heartbreak. After decades of fighting for marriage equality, same-sex couples are now facing the complex legal issues that come with planning a future together.

For the first time, the LGBT community is discovering the potential financial consequences of divorce. While no couple wants to consider these consequences before getting married, it is increasingly important that same-sex couples educate themselves about their newly acquired rights.

A few examples of those rights are:

  • Access to “family only” services
  • Authority to make spousal medical decisions
  • Spousal inheritance
  • Employment benefits
  • Adoption rights

Right to Prenuptial Agreement

In addition to the rights mentioned above, same-sex couples in Los Angeles are also beginning to utilize the right to enter into a same-sex prenuptial agreement in Los Angeles prior to tying the knot. While any couple has the right to enter into a prenuptial agreement, most couples choose not to exercise this right. This is because prenuptial agreements are generally seen as indicative of the end of a marriage before it begins. Additionally, prenuptial agreements are considered only applicable to the super-wealthy, a viewpoint that is quickly becoming outdated.

Instead of viewing a prenuptial agreement like this, same-sex couples should remember that a prenuptial agreement protects their individual rights beyond solely securing their financial future. A prenuptial agreement may proscribe a process for dividing property and finances, but it can also govern the dissolution of a marriage in the case of infidelity.

Benefits of a Prenuptial Agreement

Prenuptial agreements protect more than finances. In fact, prenuptial agreements can also dictate what will happen if one spouse dies. Studies suggest that couples with prenuptial agreements in Los Angeles have stronger relationships because there is no uncertainty as to what will happen in the case of divorce or death. Additionally, prenuptial agreements force couples to discuss complicated topics that they may have avoided discussing without such a contract.

Drafting a Prenuptial Agreement

Unfortunately, not every prenuptial agreement will be deemed enforceable. A prenuptial agreement is of no use if neither party can actually rely upon the agreements made prior to marriage. This is why it is important to contact an attorney with experience writing prenuptial agreements that hold up in court.

If you are considering marrying your same-sex partner, you should consult an attorney that specializes in same-sex prenuptial agreements. The attorneys at WHITMARSH FAMILY LAW, PC in Los Angeles have experience drafting same-sex prenuptial agreements and are ready to ensure that your rights are protected. We invite you to call (310) 552-3505 for a free consultation, today.

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