The use of prenuptial agreements continues to grow amongst couples looking to get married. Though you hope not to need it, a prenuptial agreement may be helpful in solidifying an amicable divorce.
Along with understanding what a prenup is, it is important to know about its execution. There are a few key facts you must consider.
An ideal situation
In an ideal situation where there is a prenup in place during the divorce proceedings, the parties abide by the terms of the prenup. The agreement details which assets remain separate and which remain marital, as well as the proper division of those marital assets. A good prenup also details splitting marital debt. By following these detailed instructions, the divorcing party can cut down on litigation, which, in turn, decreases the time, energy and finances necessary to complete the divorce process.
In accordance with the Uniform Premarital Agreement Act, there are a few requirements that a prenuptial agreement must meet to be valid. Both parties must agree to and sign the agreement of their free will. Therefore, the document must be clear and use common language to make sure that both parties understand the terms; if a party is a non-native of America, the agreement must receive a translation into that party's native tongue. Finally, the terms of the agreement must be fair and not heavily waited to the benefit of either partner.
Prenuptial agreements do have certain limitations. There are aspects that the agreement cannot cover, primarily child support and custody arrangements. If a prenup does include these elements, the court will likely divert to state requirements to make those determinations. However, if a party agrees to pay beyond the regular court-mandated support for a child, that stipulation may stand.
These are a few key considerations in regards to the execution of a prenup, but there are even more elements to consider. Take some time to review the law, and consult with a professional to determine the best course of action for your situation.