Kanye West may want to consider changing the lyrics to his song. At a recent event on women and personal finance sponsored by Marie Claire, Alexa von Tobel, CEO and Founder of Learnvest, was asked by an audience member if she was going to get a prenup. Though this seemed to be a little out of left field as the conversation had mostly been about budgeting and career tips, Alexa was not alarmed at all. With her company recently being valued at $100 million, there was no doubt she had not been asked this question before. Alexa, 28, said she was actually not getting one because she and her fiancee have similar amounts of wealth but she absolutely recommends it for young women who have a lot of money to protect. Joanna Coles, Editor in Chief of Marie Claire, who was interviewing Alexa said increasingly, the partner making significantly more money is likely to be a woman. Is a prenup the new sign of success for women?
A prenuptial agreement is a legal contract entered into prior to marriage and commonly includes provisions for how property and assets are to be divided, as well as spousal support, should the marriage break down and lead to divorce. A person may acquire significant assets that he or she will be bringing into the marriage which need to be protected. One of the individuals may own a business that is not only an asset, but a potential liability to the other spouse. Both individuals may have already acquired significant assets or debts and both individuals believe it is in their best interests to address these assets and liabilities. Also, those who decide to get married a second time are already familiar with what can happen, many have children that they want to financially protect, and are electing to take the necessary steps to minimize the uncertainty in divorce proceedings.
In a 2010 survey, 73% of attorneys reported an increase in clients asking for prenups, and 52% saw a spike in women, specifically, seeking them. In another survey, just released by the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, almost half of divorce lawyers said they’d seen an increase in women owing alimony after a split, which a prenup can limit.