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Why married couples should maintain some financial independence

When couples get married, they merge many aspects of their lives. Generally, this includes their finances, since they are usually each contributing to the mortgage, household expenses, child care, vacations and incidental costs.

However, many financial experts recommend that spouses maintain some element of financial independence, including separate bank accounts. Financial squabbles are one of the leading causes of divorce. Therefore, if spouses maintain some level of financial independence to spend money on the things they choose or save up for things that are important to them, it saves them conflicts with their spouse if they have different priorities.

If one spouse has considerably more assets than the other going into the marriage, a separate bank account for the less-monied spouse can help him or her feel less dependent on the spouse who has more money. Most adults don't want to feel dependent on another person to give them money to purchase the things they want or need.

Even if two spouses earn roughly the same amount of money and have about the same amount of assets when they marry, some financial independence is a good idea for the reasons noted above. Further, should the marriage end, it's good to have assets in your own name that your spouse can't touch.

Honest and open financial discussions prior to marriage can save considerable conflict later on. That's just one reason why family law attorneys recommend that couples get prenuptial agreements, even if they don't have a considerable amount of money when they wed. Experienced New York family law attorneys can help you work through the details of a prenup and make recommendations for securing your financial independence and security.

Source: Yahoo! Finance, "Why married couples should have separate bank accounts," Sam Dogen, July 15, 2017

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