After that big romantic decision to go ahead and get married, all the excitement of informing family and friends of your plans, probably the last thing you want to be thinking about is what you’re going to do if the marriage doesn’t really last.
By now everyone will have heard of prenuptial agreements. You may think these arrangements are only for rich people with a lot of assets to protect and they do perhaps seem incredibly unromantic, but actually a prenuptial agreement can be a helpful insurance policy for any marriage.
When prenuptial agreements make headlines, it’s usually because the agreements were decidedly unfair. To make a prenuptial agreement worth at least the paper it is written on, you need to ensure that its provisions are fair.
Oceanside lawyers Fischer & Van Thiel warn that clients should be very careful about what conditions they try to introduce into prenuptial agreements and to ensure that there is fairness. If you don’t do things this way, it means your marriage is starting out from a position of distrust, and that can only mean there is much greater chance of it failing.
There will be no shortage of unethical lawyers willing to take your money for drafting a useless prenuptial agreement. When the provisions of the agreement are obviously unfair, no court in the country will uphold any of the provisions. That means you’re just wasting your money and time. While an unfair prenuptial agreement may delay the time that you would be required to divide assets, anybody using that delay as an opportunity to conceal or dispose of assets runs the risk of attracting serious criminal charges against themselves.
Prenuptial agreements help marriages stay strong because they indicate to both partners that there is mutual trust between them, they help to provide an assurance that the two people are marrying out of love and not for any other considerations, and they provide guidance for what should happen if the marriage does run into trouble.
A good prenuptial agreement is written in a way that clearly indicates what the two parties consider to be acceptable behaviors and what they do not. The agreement would set out which assets were to be considered joint marital property and which were not. It would provide some instructions as to what is agreed between the parties should happen if one of them were to breach the conditions of the agreement.
When the conditions are entirely fair, courts are very unlikely to dismiss the prenuptial agreement as irrelevant. This is why you need the help of an expert lawyer with solid experience in creating prenuptial agreements, as they will be able to advise you if any of the provisions you try to introduce into the agreement will be likely to lead to problems later. It’s also very important that there is a complete absence of any kind of duress or coercion. Both parties should enter into the agreement of their own free will.