A prenup is the number one thing that can protect your assets (including your fledgling business) when you get a divorce but a lot of folks are very hesitant about bringing up the subject to their intended spouses.

Why? They’re usually afraid that they’ll look incredibly selfish, which could drive their intended spouse away long before they reach the altar. So, how can you ask for a prenup without causing a breakup? Here are some tips:

  1. Start the conversation early. You do not want to wait until the wedding attire is ordered, the venue is chosen and the invitations to your guests have been mailed.
  2. Be honest and open. Tell your intended spouse the truth about why you want the prenup, whether your business partners want you to get a prenup or you just witnessed your parents’ ugly divorce.
  3. Focus on the certainty a prenup gives you both. A valid prenup is not one-sided. Emphasize the fact that — should you ever divorce — you’d like to have a “conscious uncoupling” that allows you to remain friends. A prenup can help with that process.
  4. Make this a collaborative process. You each need your own attorney before the prenup is signed — but there’s no reason that you can’t work on the terms together. Doing so may give your intended spouse a greater sense of control over the situation and ease their concerns.

 Finally, just accept that this is going to be a difficult conversation. It isn’t the kind of topic you should toss around casually during your morning coffee or on your partner’s birthday. Make sure to treat the subject with the respect it deserves.

Prenuptial agreements are increasingly important for modern couples. If you have questions about how to get one, talk to an attorney today.