The Co-Author Prenup

36 Pages Posted: 25 Jan 2017

See all articles by David A. Schlueter

David A. Schlueter

St. Mary's University - School of Law

Date Written: 2013


Producing a book or article with co-authors is not an easy task. There are six potential issues one might consider before deciding to co-author a book or article. First, do you really want to be a co-author? Second, how many co-authors are going to be involved in the project? Having more than one co-author can make the departure of a co-author less of an issue, but each co-author needs to have a clearly defined role. Third, what role will each member of the team perform and what are those roles? Fourth, what should the co-author “marriage” look like? Multiple scenarios of a “marriage” are broken down and discussed. Fifth, what threats are there to the “marriage”? A structure needs to be formed and transparent anytime there are co-authors. Sixth, how would you dissolve the relationship? The relationship is much easier to dissolve when there is a clear path for how to handle the departure of one of the co-authors.

Authoring a work for publication is a difficult task by itself, adding other pieces to the puzzle can alleviate some issues while potentially creating others. Prospective co-authors must be proactive in answering the questions that will arise during the co-authoring process. Also, having a prenup is useful; a sample prenup is provided.

Keywords: Co-Author, Writing, Authoring, Collaborating, Editor, Publishing, Book Publisher, Sanford Kaye, Writing under Pressure: The Quick Writing Process, Law Review, Douglas K. Moll, Minority Oppression & the Limited Liability Company: Learning (or Not) from Close Corporation History, Nancy Levit, Scholar

Suggested Citation

Schlueter, David A., The Co-Author Prenup (2013). 44 St. Mary’s L.J. 451 (2013) , Available at SSRN:

David A. Schlueter (Contact Author)

St. Mary's University - School of Law ( email )

One Camino Santa Maria
San Antonio, TX 78228
United States

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