Prenuptial agreements aren’t just for the very wealthy anymore. Almost anyone who is contemplating a modern marriage should consider getting one.
These benefits offer many advantages. They help you protect non-marital property. They save you time and money, because you essentially work out most of the terms of the divorce in advance, before any divorce is happening. They eliminate a great deal of uncertainty about the future.
What is a prenuptial agreement?
A prenuptial agreement is a contract that you and your spouse enter into in which both parties disclose all of their pre-existing assets and property. They then decide in advance how the marital property will be divided in the event of a divorce or death.
They are especially important for business owners who might need to protect a controlling share of the business, for people who have IP, for those who are entering into second marriages and who want to protect the rights of all of the children who might have a say in the estate, and for those who are worried about being saddled with a large, unfair spousal support payment later.
They eliminate all uncertainty in regards to the financial issues that could spring up in the event of a divorce.
What is a postnuptial agreement?
A postnuptial agreement is the same as a prenuptial agreement. These agreements are just created after the couple is already married.
Many couples who signed prenuptial agreements have postnuptial agreements because a prenuptial should be evaluated every five years or so just to make sure they continue to reflect the current state of the couple’s assets.
They may also be signed any time the family faces significant changes, such as one spouse giving up a career to stay with the children or one spouse coming into a large inheritance.
What should be covered in a prenuptial agreement?
All the major financial issues of the divorce should be covered, including the equitable division of assets and spousal support.
Child custody and child support don’t typically go into these agreements. The court always reserves the right to set these agreements in accordance with what would be in the best interests of the child. Generally there’s no advantage to trying to work these issues out in advance.
Can a prenuptial agreement be challenged?
Yes. If they’re written with unenforceable provisions or were not executed properly in the first place then it is absolutely possible to challenge a prenuptial agreement. This can happen if both parties did not have their own attorneys, in cases where assets were not disclosed honestly, in cases where the agreement was thought to be signed under duress, or in cases where the agreement is unfair or inequitable.
Your attorneys can help you craft an agreement that will hold up in court and which will give you the peace of mind that comes from knowing you’re protected financially no matter what happens.
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Our team has extensive experience representing spouses who wish to craft abiding prenuptial agreements and postnuptial agreements.
Call (516) 679-4300 to schedule your consultation today.