Prenuptial Agreements & Postnuptial Agreements
There are few guarantees in life, but uncertainty is one of them. That’s why, regardless of how a couple feel about each other now, its important to consider all the possibilities the future could bring. This is where a Prenuptial Agreement (also referred to as a Pre-Nuptial Agreement or a Prenup) comes into play; to reduce uncertainty and plan for what seems unlikely. It protects the interests of both spouses, and like an insurance policy, can provide peace of mind.
About Prenuptial Agreements
Prenuptial Agreements have been held to be valid and binding by the Pennsylvania courts. A Prenuptial Agreement is a contract which couples may enter, prior to marriage, which determines how their assets will be divided in the event of their divorce. A Prenuptial Agreement will only be binding if the couple actually gets married. The Agreement requires that each party provides the other with full and fair disclosure of all their assets and debts, with values. As long as full and fair disclosure has been provided, and there has been no fraud or duress asserted in inducing a party to sign, then the Agreement will be held to be valid and binding no matter what the terms. The Court will not look to whether an Agreement is “fair” as long as full and fair disclosure of the assets and values has been provided.
What a Prenuptial Agreement Can Do
A Prenuptial Agreement may…
- Specify how assets are to be divided upon divorce
- Preserve a party’s pre-marital assets
- Distribute debts in the event of a divorce
- Set the amount and duration of alimony and spousal support
- Specify who may remain in the marital residence
- Apply to all assets, or only to specific assets
What a Prenuptial Agreement Can NOT Do
There are a few things that a Prenuptial Agreement may NOT do, including…
- Set child support amounts
- Determine child custody arrangements
- Set an amount of child support
- Defy criminal or public policy
About Postnuptial Agreements
A Postnuptial Agreement (also referred to as a Post-Nuptial Agreement) is similar to a Prenuptial Agreement, however, it is executed by the parties after the marriage has occurred. The same criteria for Prenuptial Agreements are applied to Postnuptial Agreements. As long as each party provides the other with full and fair disclosure of all their assets and debts, with values, the Agreement will be valid and binding.
Do It Before It’s Too Late
Without a Prenuptial or Postnuptial Agreement in place, you’re leaving it up to the courts to decide how your marital property will be divided in a divorce. And without an experienced attorney to properly draft your agreement, you may find in the future that it’s unenforceable. Speak with one of our prenuptial lawyers today…