A prenuptial agreement is a great way to protect assets during a divorce. When it is structured correctly, it provides security for both parties to the marriage. But is a prenup something a parent should be requiring? That’s a fair question, and one that a father recently posted on Reddit’s “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subreddit. Billed as “a catharsis for the frustrated moral philosopher in all of us,” AITA commonly hosts questions about perceived wrongdoing, or whether someone was just plain rude.
In this particular case, the father’s argument was that he wanted his son to require a prenup for his upcoming wedding. His reasoning was that the son makes considerably more than the fiancé, and also wants some of his trust fund money early, to pay for the wedding. The son, John, has a good job and owns a condo unit that his father and stepmother gifted to him. He is 27, and will receive his trust fund when he turns 30. He can get money early for the wedding, but only if he agrees to a prenuptial agreement.
Is Parental Pressure the Right Choice?
So, should parents be able to require that of their children? At what point does it make sense, and when does it simply come off as controlling? Opinions on AITA were mixed, with some users saying that keeping track of that trust fund money and protecting John was what the father should be doing. Others thought that at 27, John is old enough to make his own decisions about whether he wants some money early, because there is much more to a marriage than how much each of the spouses bring in financially.
Whether to pressure an adult child into a prenup is not an easy question. There are circumstances like the ones John’s father is detailing, where it could make sense. Depending on the size of the trust fund in question, and how much money is being requested for the wedding, it could be that John’s fiancé is interested in the money. It could also be that she just wants to have a nice wedding, and John doesn’t mind spending the money because he wants to make her happy. Maybe he wants a big wedding, too.
When Does Protection Become Control?
In three more years, John will get access to the money anyway. He can scale back the wedding, marry, and never create a prenup. Or he could wait three years to marry, and do the same with a bigger wedding. Either way, he and his bride-to-be have ways to get around the father’s requests. But should they? That is the question that is hard to answer, and that could have different answers for every person and situation.
Do you have questions about a prenuptial agreement? Reach out to us today at The McKinney Law Group. We can help answer questions for people like John and his fiancé, and for anyone who is thinking about whether a prenup would be the right choice for their future financial protection.
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If you have questions about a prenup agreement or a postnup agreement or require legal assistance in other areas of Family Law you may always contact Damien McKinney of The McKinney Law Group to discuss your case further. He can be reached by phone at 813-428-3400 or by e-mail at [email protected].
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