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Case Studies

Preparing for Marriage

The Situation:

When Ms. L, the daughter of a Tolleson Wealth Management client family, began talking about marriage, our advisors helped begin a dialogue about the best way to prepare for it.

Most young people, especially from families of wealth, are very hesitant to have the discussion about the dreaded “prenup.” However, we encouraged a very different type of conversation – much more about planning for the couple’s future together and making sure the husband would have sufficient resources if something happened to his wife. We encouraged Ms. L to talk about her values around money, her goals around their careers and what their involvement would be with her family’s wealth and wealth advisors.

The Solution

We encouraged both Ms. L and her fiancé to be open and transparent with one another. We began the process of creating wills, since – like most families – her wealth migrates only to lineal descendants and not to spouses. She bought life insurance to make sure her husband would not find himself in a financial bind if she were to pass away prematurely. And, yes, we also talked about the pre-marital agreement. The underlying premise of the discussion was targeted at what was fair to both parties under a variety of circumstances, not just divorce.

The premarital discussion began more than six months before the wedding date, well before the rush of the wedding plans occurred, and concluded successfully with everyone feeling like the provisions were comprehensive and fair to all.