Many Minnesota family farms go back generations. Regardless of how far your family’s farm dates back, if you have an ownership share of it or are going to inherit all or part of it, it’s wise to have a solid prenuptial agreement in place before you get married. That’s true whether you’re involved in the day-to-day operations or not.
Your parents may have already encouraged you to get a prenup to help protect the farm, which includes the land it’s on, the properties on it and all the equipment and other assets. Whether they have or not, it’s crucial to understand how it will help keep the farm in the family if you and your soon-to-be spouse should divorce – no matter how impossible that may be to imagine for you.
A prenup can be compared to an insurance policy. You certainly don’t plan for your home to catch fire or to end up in a serious car crash. However, you wouldn’t want to be without insurance if one of those things happened.
Creating a prenup that will hold up in court
While the need to protect the family farm is an important incentive to draw up a prenup, remember that it has to be fair to both sides. You can’t just ask your partner to give up any claim to those assets and give them nothing in return. A one-sided prenup is considered “unconscionable” by legal standards and likely won’t hold up if it’s challenged in divorce.
That’s one reason why both parties to a prenup need to have their own legal representation. Ideally, both parties have an equal role in creating their prenup. However, if one party and their representative draw it up, the other party should get their own independent legal review. While this certainly isn’t the most enjoyable part of planning for a wedding, it can be one of the most important things you do to prepare for marriage.