Prenuptial agreements, or “prenups” aren’t for everyone, but many people in Georgia may be surprised at how popular these family law agreements can be. It may seem that only the extremely wealthy should get prenups, but almost 33 percent of single people plan to ask their future husband or wife for a prenup. While these agreements may not seem romantic, they can go a long way to protect your assets in the case of a divorce.

Many prenuptial agreements will dictate how bank accounts and real estate will be divided in a divorce settlement. They may also cover how wills and other estate planning should be dealt with and whether any alimony will be awarded or calculated. And, as couples start marrying later, many people bring the wealth and retirement accounts they’ve accumulated throughout their career with them into a marriage.

Prenups are also useful for men and women who were previously married and have children from their former relationships. If something were to happen to one of the partners, it would be important that their children from outside the marriage are cared for and supported; having a prenup ensures that the surviving spouse can’t cut the other spouse’s children off from their parents’ money.

It is true that prenups aren’t appropriate in every marriage and even when they are necessary it is often difficult to bring the subject up. Asking your future husband or wife to make a contract in the event of a divorce or death isn’t the most sentimental way to start a marriage, but it is a pragmatic way to avoid fighting later. With money issues being a major factor in marital discord, a prenup could give you a better insight in how your partner spends his or her money.

Source: Reuters, “When Valentines and prenups go together,” Kathleen Kingsbury, Feb. 15, 2012