Family law: Being on the same financial page is important

Ontario couples who plan to get married may be aware of statistics that show the high percentage of divorces that follow disputes about money. Of all the family law issues that may cause contention, money appears to be number one on the list. However, recognising the potential problem may encourage couples to have honest and open conversations about money from the outset. Marriage requires mutual respect, trust and understanding, and breaching any of these can lead to suspicion and anger.
Contention in the future might be avoided if couples learn to talk about money even before their marriage. They can start by discussing their respective goals, and then work on coming up with mutual goals without disrespecting each other’s objectives. This will involve setting financial limits that will allow the couple to move toward their life goals, and it will be important to make time to check in weekly to make sure everything goes according to plan. This will allow immediate addressing of the issues to avoid the festering of contention.

Future spouses may also benefit from discussing their respective money philosophies and making honest efforts to understand each other’s viewpoints. Discussing prospective financial decisions before they are made can also help prevent disputes. To avoid arguments about what money is spent on, some couples choose to allocate a set amount of money per month for each spouse to spend on anything of their choice.
Ontario couples may also find it beneficial to enlist professionals who can provide support and guidance when necessary. The skills of an experienced family law lawyer can be invaluable. A seasoned legal professional can answer any questions a couple may have concerning all aspects of family law, including the drafting of prenuptial or postnuptial agreements. Source: businessinsider.com, “7 ways to prevent money from ruining your marriage“, Emmie Martin, Accessed on Feb. 10, 2017

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