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Kevin O'Leary Says 'Do Not' Merge Finances, Bank Accounts With Your Spouse: 'I Forbid It in My Own Family' The "Shark Tank" star stressed the importance of keeping your "own financial identity" in a relationship.

By Emily Rella

entrepreneur daily

"Shark Tank" star and O'Leary Ventures chairman Kevin O'Leary is known for his blunt personal finance advice while making hopeful entrepreneurs sweat on ABC's hit show — but his latest controversial take has made him the one in the hot seat.

While appearing on an episode of FOX Business's "Varney & Co." on Monday, O'Leary said he does not believe that married couples should merge their bank accounts and told host Stuart Varney that it is important to keep your own financial identity in a relationship — in case the worst happens.

Related: Kevin O'Leary Defends Elon Musk, Calls Out 'Loser States'

"You must, in this society, maintain your own financial identity. You have to," O'Leary said. "Because 50% of marriages end in divorce for financial stress over the first five years of marriage, and even if you have a long-term situation and anything would happen to your spouse, such as death … if you don't have your own financial identity, you're in the wilderness in America."

O'Leary said that he thinks people are "nuts" who decide to merge their accounts and not maintain credit rating and accounts of their own when they enter a cohabitation partnership or marriage.

"I forbid it in my own family," he said. "I force prenups; I force pro-cohabitation agreements on others, I want financial due diligence on significant others because I'm a realist. I deal in the real world."

O'Leary added that when it comes to couples building a financial future together, a prenuptial agreement "helps a lot."

The "Shark Tank" star also posted on X that couples should keep investment and savings accounts in the individual's "own name," especially during the first 10 years of the relationship.

"You do NOT have to merge your accounts with your significant other," he wrote alongside a video. "There's absolutely no need to do that. It's very important that you keep your OWN financial identity."

Related: Kevin O'Leary Says You Need $5M in the Bank to 'Survive'

O'Leary married his wife Linda in 1990 before separating for two years in 2011. The couple then resumed their marriage and are still together and share two children, Savannah, 30, and Trevor, 27.

Emily Rella

Entrepreneur Staff

Senior News Writer

Emily Rella is a Senior News Writer at Entrepreneur.com. Previously, she was an editor at Verizon Media. Her coverage spans features, business, lifestyle, tech, entertainment, and lifestyle. She is a 2015 graduate of Boston College and a Ridgefield, CT native. Find her on Twitter at @EmilyKRella.

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