Sometimes, before two people get married, it makes sense to figure out what will happen if they decide to later get a divorce. Specifically, it may be important to figure out ahead of time what will happen to a home, a business, or accounts and investments in the event of a divorce. The agreement to cover these details is called a prenuptial agreement. Prenuptial agreements are becoming more and more common, especially in second marriages. If you are considering establishing a prenuptial agreement, the best way to protect yourself and to understand the types of things that you can and cannot include in a prenuptial agreement is to work with a qualified attorney.
At My.Attorney, we have over three decades of experience drawing up prenuptial agreements and can help you work through all the issues related to protecting yourself in the event of a divorce. We will clearly explain your options and provide you with a solid, enforceable prenuptial agreement. Contact our office today to set up a consultation.
What Can a Prenuptial Agreement Cover?
A prenuptial agreement is an agreement created and signed before a marriage is entered into and becomes effective once the couple is married. The purpose is to establish what will happen to assets and finances in the event of divorce. It can include provisions that govern future rights and responsibilities. For instance, it is perfectly legal to agree that if a spouse cheats during the marriage, he/she must pay a certain amount in damages to help the other spouse move on a rebuild following the betrayal.
Most commonly, a prenuptial agreement can protect assets and businesses from getting tied up in a divorce proceeding. For example, if you have a family business that is not protected by a prenuptial agreement, upon divorce it is possible that your ex-spouse can force you to sell your own business or the assets of the business in the divorce process. You could be forced to part with a successful, thriving business you built over many years to satisfy the need to split assets in a family court. The best way to avoid losing your business or home is to protect it through a prenuptial agreement.
Finally, a prenuptial agreement can clearly establish the amount of spousal support that will be required if the couple divorces or can waive the option of spousal support completely.
What Can’t a Prenuptial Agreement Cover?
A prenuptial agreement cannot set, change or waive the amount of child support owed following a divorce. Simply put, your prenuptial agreement should not attempt to predict or alter any child support that might be owed in the event of a divorce. Doing so could potentially threaten the validity or interpretation of the entire agreement.
Enforcing an Agreement
It is important to get the prenuptial agreement right so that it cannot be invalidated later on. Most prenuptial agreements face some sort a legal challenge if the couple gets divorced. This makes sense because the agreement can so dramatically affect the outcome of a divorce. Your ex-spouse likely already has an attorney to handle the other aspects of the divorce. That attorney will almost certainly turn his or her attention to the prenuptial agreement in an effort to undo the protections it provides. As such, it is never advisable to use a pre-printed form or online document service to handle such a delicate matter.
You will need a competent, savvy attorney to ensure that your rights and assets are protected.
At My.Attorney, we will not only help you go through the process of creating the agreement but also help you to go through the process of getting it signed in ways that will protect you from future headaches. The most common challenge to the enforceability of a prenuptial agreement is not the language of the document itself, but the way in which the agreement was entered into.
If you are the spouse with greater assets, you are very likely to face a claim that the agreement was entered into under duress or threats. This is a common tactic. If the opposing attorney cannot attack the language of the document, he or she is likely to attack the way in which the document was agreed to. We can help you avoid such claims.
First, both parties need to make a full and accurate disclosure of their assets. The easiest way to run into trouble is to leave out some important or valuable items when going through the process. We can help you make sure nothing is missed and that everything that needs to be disclosed is done in the best way possible.
Second, your fiancé(e) should have the opportunity to have the prenuptial agreement reviewed by his or her own attorney. Whether or not your intended chooses to do this, it is important that the opportunity to do so is provided. It is best to work out any objections and concerns before a marriage takes place. If problems are going to arise, it is best that you know them upfront so that you can make an informed decision.
Third, and often most importantly, you need to give the other person plenty of time to consider the agreement, Giving them a copy of the agreement just days or even weeks before the ceremony is setting yourself up for a mess. They will almost certainly claim duress and point to the short time-frame and the “pressure” of the upcoming wedding to try to void the agreement. The best course is to discuss the agreement and have it signed months ahead of the wedding. We can help you through this process and avoid common pitfalls so that the agreement is enforced and you are protected.
Contact Our Florida Prenuptial Agreement Today
The trusted attorneys at My.Attorney can help make the prenuptial agreement process straightforward and seamless. Our decades of experience as a dedicated legal team can ensure that your wedding day is bliss while protecting your hard work and success. If you have any questions, please contact our office to set up an appointment.