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3 Legal Tips for Jenny McCarthy, Donnie Wahlberg's Engagement

By Jenny Tsay, Esq. | Last updated on

Wedding bells are ahead now that 90s icons Jenny McCarthy and Donnie Wahlberg are engaged.

McCarthy, a TV host and former Playboy model, and Wahlberg, an actor and member of New Kids on the Block, announced their engagement on "The View," according to E! News. After the engagement was announced, "The View" host Barbara Walters offered up her New York City apartment as a potential wedding venue.

Now that the celebrity duo is heading down the aisle, here are three legal tips for their pending nuptials.

1. Get a prenup

These days, it's rare for celebrities to get married without signing a prenup. If McCarthy and Wahlberg choose to go down that road, they better have family law attorneys handy. To have a legitimate prenup, the agreement will need to meet all contract formalities and avoid legal quirks. Even though prenups are generally used to protect the parties' financial interests, some states don't allow couples to sign away their alimony payments. Plus, chores or sex provisions usually aren't enforceable in prenups.

2. Step-parents rights

Now that Wahlberg and McCarthy are engaged, they're on their way to being step-parents to their future spouses' kids from previous relationships. McCarthy is outspoken about her views on vaccinating her son, but if Wahlberg disagrees on how to raise his stepson, he'll likely have to get legal custody over the child before he can make important medical decisions for him.

However, if Wahlberg or McCarthy want to adopt the others' kids, both birth parents of each child must give consent to do so. But if the other birth parents' parental rights have been terminated due to abandonment, neglect, unfitness, or failure to pay child support, then consent may not be required.

3. Wedding venue liability

Barbara Walters has generously offered her residence as a wedding venue for the engaged couple, but if they take her up on it, Walters has a few legal issues to consider.

Under premises liability, the property owner must ensure that the area is reasonably safe for guests. Property owners should check for any potential dangers and fix them or warn visitors. Since weddings are often boozy events, if guests get a bit too tipsy and act in unsafe ways and injure themselves, depending on the circumstances, the property owner may be liable for those guests' injuries.

According to McCarthy, the couple may get married as soon as August.

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