By now, you have probably heard that Bill and Melinda Gates are getting divorced. Because the couple was one of the wealthiest in the world, many people in New Hampshire were curious to know if they had a prenuptial agreement to dictate how they will divide their assets and debts.
News reports suggest that the Gateses did not draw up a prenuptial agreement. But at some point after they got married, they created a “separation agreement” addressing property division and other divorce matters. This sounds like a postnuptial agreement, which is the same thing as a prenup, except that spouses create a postnup after they are already married.
So it appears that the Gateses have planned ahead of time for the possibility of divorce. Assuming neither of them challenges the validity of the “separation agreement,” the division of marital assets should go fairly smoothly, considering we are talking about a reported $130.5 billion fortune.
Prenups are available for every married couple
Many wealthy couples in New Hampshire have a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement in place. But prenups are not only for high-income couples with extensive assets. The benefits of a prenup can help anyone planning to get married and even strengthen their relationship with their future spouse.
Knowing that they have already negotiated how their property would be divided up if they ever get divorced gives married people the peace of mind that there will not be a long, ugly divorce process. Instead of undermining the couples’ commitment to each other, providing this gift can show that whatever happens in the future, you care about each other.