Nuptial Agreements

General

Prenuptial, postnuptial and reconciliation agreements are private agreements entered into that set out specific terms the parties have agreed upon should the parties ever divorce. These agreements may provide for a certain division of separate or marital property, alimony, grounds, or court costs.

Any agreement may be challenged by the other spouse. Because we are experienced trial attorneys, we draft agreements knowing that they may be challenged in court. We avoid generic forms that may cause confusion. A well-drafted agreement before a divorce can save you a significant amount of money and emotional turmoil. It should address your specific situation and comply with the law.

Although there are no guarantees, there are some simple things you can do to make it more likely that your agreement will be upheld by a judge.

  • Sign and finalize the agreement as early as possible rather than the week of the marriage.
  • Fully disclose your assets and debts to the other party. It is a good idea to attach the lists of assets to the agreement so everyone knows that a full disclosure was made.
  • Make sure both parties have had a chance to participate fully in drafting the agreement and/or obtain legal advice before signing the agreement.
  • Specifically state if you intend for the agreement to expire after a certain period of time or in the event of certain circumstances.

What is a prenuptial agreement?

A prenuptial agreement is an agreement entered into before the marriage and is designed to protect the separately owned assets of a party from becoming a marital asset of the parties.

What is a postnuptial agreement?

A postnuptial agreement is an agreement entered into by the parties after they are already married and is also designed to protect the separately owned assets of a party to the marriage.

What is a reconciliation agreement?

Parties going through a divorce who desire to reconcile may be concerned that the reconciliation may fail. Similar to a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement, the reconciliation agreement sets out the agreements the parties have as to division of assets, grounds for divorce, court costs, retirement, debts, alimony or other matters that are agreed upon. These agreements may include a provision that the divorce complaint will be dismissed and expunged after a certain period of time.