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#75 - Prenuptial Agreements

#75 - Prenuptial Agreements

Prenuptial Agreements
Price: Ask Tiger Woods

If you find yourself entering a state of eternal bliss with the man or woman you will forever love, life is rose petals and champagne kisses. Should you find yourself sitting across from that same person in a room full of divorce lawyers and bankers you know what marriage looks like after it has been beaten with the ugly stick. That is, unless you entered the union with a little insurance policy called a prenuptial agreement.  Rich people love prenuptial agreements even more than they love custom shoes and trophy wives because it kills two birds with one stone; first they can rest assured that their fortune is safe in the event that their union “goes south” and upon their untimely demise their remaining fotune will pass to the Swiss accounts of their heirs.

For many people, the thought of a prenuptial is despicable since love conquers all. Knowing that divorce is Latin for bludgeoning a man with his own wallet, there are a few problems with this train of thought. First, people who think this way likely don’t have any assets, think their Rock & Republic jeans are an asset and despite living their lives by the wise words of Deep Purple, have forgotten that all is fair in love, war and banking. For those that do know how far the smitten can fall when the heart grows absent, there is nothing wrong with asking the love of one’s life to sign on the X, initial here, initial here and sign there. With a few strokes of the pen, both man and wife have shown that their love transcends money and that they truly have fallen for each other’s hearts rather than their numbered accounts.

The most successful way to befriend the wealthy when it comes to prenuptials is to indicate that you asked your mate to sign one, have signed one yourself or share a story about calling off an engagement when your true love was incensed at the thought of drawing up such an agreement. This works on many levels, most important it shows that you have a fine head on your shoulders and have amassed enough wealth that a prenuptial is sensible. If possible, poke fun at the one person in the room without such an agreement in place by offering them half a cigar or half a drink. Expect chortles and mumbled guffaws as most rich people have forgotten how to laugh or their Botox treatment restricts smiling. From here you can engage in scintillating conversation around custom tailoring, an analysis of intertemporal tradeoffs in macroeconomic policy or which model of Maserati is most appropriate for the children leaving for boarding school.

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#40 - Second Marriages

#40 - Second Marriages

Second Marriages
Price: Half of Everything

Rich people love second marriages. It isn’t that they like to end the first one, but the fact remains that marriage is the leading cause of divorce. There isn’t necessarily anything wrong with the first husband or wife only that they remind each other of what it was like to be without money. The result, once a couple has banked their millions both parties feel it is time to trade up and move on. The woman looks for a man that doesn’t remind her of her ex-husband’s insecurities about success and a man looks for a trophy wife to make him feel younger.

Denial that *ahem* it is about to hit the fan is common. Some men compensate with a new Lamborghini or running groups while women collect Carlos Falchi handbags and Alexander McQueen dresses; both drink more. This is only a temporary solution before the house of marriage crumbles around them. Once either, or both, realizes the end is near they have to move fast. Its time to play “hide the assets” before calling in the sharks and sealing the fate of their ill-conceived union. The race is on to find the best, brightest and most ruthless team of legal eagles to claw and battle for every public asset that they haven’t shuffled to off-shore accounts. Everyone involved realizes there is more than enough money to last many generations, so it isn’t about the houses, the cars or the cash. It is about devaluing their ex and stripping them of their dignity and pride at every legal turn.

After the papers are signed, the second marriage is all about enjoying the life they think was flushed away during the first marriage. This means more travel, less work, more luxurious lifestyles, bigger homes, more soirees and alimony. They build new friendships and join different clubs to start their new life together. Everything is coming up roses. The danger is an addiction to the freshness and newness of nuptial promises and the honeymoon phase. Unfortunately, with all things new, the passion fades and the shine loses its lustre. If the relationship was built on mutual contempt for their exes and a healthy dose of Viagra, the marriage faces an untimely demise and this time you can’t try to keep it together for the kids!

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