Pre-Nuptial and Post-Nuptial Agreements

A prenuptial agreement is a contract entered into prior to a marriage or civil union. A postnuptial agreement is a similar contract entered into after a marriage or civil union. These agreements can be used to provide for the preservation and/or disposition of property in the event of a divorce, and can also address alimony in the event of separation or divorce, the sharing of financial obligations during a marriage or after separation or divorce, estate rights of a spouse upon death, separation, or divorce, as well as other issues. The validity and enforceability of prenuptial and postnuptial agreements can be a point of dispute and, if necessary, an issue to be resolved by a court. This can be prevented by engaging in a cooperative process with an intended spouse, careful negotiation and drafting of a prenup, and advice from a qualified family law attorney. The timing of a prenuptial agreement in relation to the date of marriage can be a factor in assessing the validity of the prenuptial agreement, so a person considering a prenuptial agreement should consult with an attorney early in the process to avoid any issues with the validity of the agreement.

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