A prenuptial agreement for everyone?

A “pre-nup” is a binding legal contract between two people entered into before marriage. Sometimes thought of as a dirty word signifying a lack of trust, a pre-nup can actually save time and money in the event of a divorce. It is important to remember that marriage not only unifies your love but, also typically your property.

Florida’s law state that prenuptials should be entered into voluntarily; be in writing and signed by both parties. Additionally, there needs to be reasonable disclosure of assets. However, pre-nups are not just for those with considerable assets. Pre-nups can serve as a protection to both parties. It can be tailored in any number of ways as it conveys what the hopes and desires of the parties are. Since no two situations are alike, one should not use standard templates to convey their wishes. Some common actions that pre-nups include are:

  • The rights and obligation toward property that is acquired before marriage and during marriage. Since property obtained or enhanced during marriage can be tricky to decipher whom it belongs to, a clause can be made to give direction that would clear up the issue. For example: if a person owns a home prior to marriage, that person may provide that they will be solely responsible for the home and its payment.
  • In the event of a divorce how will the soon to be ex-spouse be cared for-if at all. Will a spouse get your retirement or not? Note: In Orlando alimony attorney can be waived, but child support cannot.
  • If there are children prior to the marriage a pre-nup can outline how the children will be cared for and make sure that your children receive what is intended.
  • Any other desire that is not illegal can be placed into a pre-nup.

Once a pre-nupis established there is nothing that precludes the parties from modifying it later on with another writing. A person who seeks to challenge a pre-nup must show to the court they did not sign the agreement or that they signed under fraud, or duress. What this means is that a person seeking a pre-nup should do so by talking it over with there prospective spouse months before the actual marriage.

Additionally, a person enacting a pre-nup should not do anything that can be construed as hiding assets or not being reasonably open with your partner. If not, a judge may find the terms of the pre-nup to be unconscionable and can void the agreement in whole or in part. This is often very fact intensive and a family law attorney can provide guidance on whether or not a prenuptial is enforceable.

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