Thursday, July 27, 2017
When children or grandchildren are engaged to be married, financial and estate planning are rarely top priorities. Planning for the big day requires copious amounts of time and a dedication to minute details, but this narrow focus ignores important, long-term matters. As a loving parent or grandparent, this can be an opportune time to help children or grandchildren prepare for the realities of marriage.
While certainly not a romantic conversation or notion, having a premarital agreement in place before the wedding is usually in the best interest of both parties. This is especially true if one partner is expecting a significant inheritance or gift after marriage. If a prenuptial agreement is not possible, consider pushing for a full financial disclosure. If both parties are fully aware of each other’s assets and liabilities, it may help avoid future financial frustrations.
As the parent or grandparent of the couple, review your own estate planning documents. If you are currently making outright gifts to a currently unwed child, it may be prudent to start providing these funds through a trust before marriage. Finally, encourage the couple to budget. If possible, use the wedding planning as a springboard for teaching and encouraging wise financial practices.
See They're Engaged!...Top 5 Financial Considerations Before the Wedding, Glenmede, June 23, 2017.
Special thanks to Joel C. Dobris (Professor of Law, UC Davis School of Law) for bringing this article to my attention.