A Prenuptial Agreement is a contract signed by two individuals before marriage. This contract determines how property, assets, debts, and spousal support is to be handled should there be a divorce or death.
This document is used for creating a legally binding agreement between two individuals before they get married, outlining the division of assets and liabilities in the event of a divorce. A prenuptial agreement template provides a framework for couples to customize and create their own agreement.
Although there is a stereotype to link a marital agreement to wealthy people, it is oftentimes other conditions that persuade the parties to outline financial responsibilities and expectations they have of their marriage. These conditions may include any of the following:
Or course, state divorce laws determine what constitutes marital assets. The difficulty lies in the fact that the law does not establish what belongs to whom, or whether the asset was acquired before or after the marriage. A marriage agreement allows to avoid needless and costly litigation in many cases. Naturally, like any contract, it may be disputed in court. However, a well-crafted prenuptial agreement can substantially reduce the scope of the court battle.
Browse the prenuptial agreements templates provided below for a ready-made sample of your premarital agreement.
When it comes to family law, its enforcement, and decisions on the validity of prenup agreements, each state has its own legislation and practices. Sometimes confusion arises as to which state’s law applies. It may be in cases when the parties come from different states, or they moved, or it may depend on the location of their marriage. One easy solution is to include a clause in your agreement specifying which law is to be applied in your case.
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When you marry you may spend two or twenty years with the same person, so there are issues to watch out for. The parties to be married work out the terms and conditions of their marriage plan together. This includes their obligations towards each other during the marriage and after, should the marriage come to an end.
The terms of the document normally cover the following areas:
Finally, you may include provisions for matters that you find unique to your situation.
A prenuptial contract can be overruled (i.e. ruled invalid) or canceled in some cases, such as one of the following:
For the matter of fairness, and to avoid a situation where your contract is challenged in court, it is advisable for each party to have their own attorney or to sign the paper in front of the attorney. It is recommended to complete the contract at least a month before the wedding to allow for a reasonable amount of time to review the completed agreement before the commitment. Do think as far as you can in terms of fairness. What seems like fair now may not be considered fair 20 years later when the circumstances change and you have 5 children to send to the university.
Although you are not expected to file your document, keep it in a safe and secure location such as a safe, safety deposit box, or with your attorney.
There are pros and cons to signing a premarital contract. As with any plan, it may simply not work out for you. It may be unnecessary or too early. And of course, the question of even bringing up the issue of signing a prenup raises the question of “trust”.
If your or your partner’s circumstances change, such as one of you loses your job, becomes bankrupt, injured or cannot fulfill your financial obligations for any other reason, you may decide to write an amendment to the agreement. In this document, you can add, delete, or rewrite sections of your agreement as it suits your current situation.
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