The importance of honest financial discussions before marriage

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There are all sorts of things it can be very important for a couple to have open and honest discussions with one another about prior to marrying. One such thing is finances.

A recent survey, however, indicates that there are quite a few high-asset individuals who aren’t having such discussions with their partner before getting married.

The survey was of millionaires here in the United States. Only six in 10 of the respondents said that, prior to living with or marrying their partner, they gave a full disclosure of their financial situation to their partner. Additionally, three in 10 of the respondents indicated that they didn’t have any financial discussions with their partner.

Why do you think having open and complete financial discussions with their partner prior to marriage isn’t more common among high-asset individuals?

Why are honest financial discussions so important for couples looking to get married (whatever their income level)? Well for one, honest disclosure of financial matters prior to marriage could help reduce the likelihood of financial problems arising during the marriage, such as tensions over “surprise” financial issues. In the above-mentioned survey, couples that reported having financial arguments had a particularly high likelihood not having made full financial disclosures prior to living together or marriage.

Also, such open discussions can help both individuals in a couple have a clear picture of the couple’s financial situation going into the marriage. This can be helpful in a variety of different contexts. For one, it could help if the couple eventually decides to divorce, as having a good idea of overall financial situation can be very important when divorcing.

In addition to discussing financial matters, another finance-related thing it can be important for a person to do prior to getting married is carefully thinking about whether they want to form a prenuptial agreement. Whether or not a prenuptial agreement is present is another thing that can have a big impact if a marriage ends in a divorce. Family law attorneys can provide soon-to-be married individuals with information and guidance on prenuptial agreements and issues related to such agreements.

Source: The Street, “Rich Getting Richer — How Much a Spouse Should Know,” Gregg Greenberg, Jan. 22, 2016

Higdon, Hardy & Zuflacht, L.L.P. 12000 Huebner Rd #200 San Antonio, TX 78230 Telephone: (210) 349-9933 Fax: (210) 349-9988
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