A prenuptial agreement, also known as a prenup or premarital agreement, is a legally binding contract entered into by two individuals prior to their marriage. This document outlines the rights and responsibilities of each party in the event of a divorce or separation.
A prenup typically includes provisions related to the division of property, spousal support, and other financial matters. It is often used by couples who have significant assets, business interests, or family obligations that they want to protect in the event of a divorce.
While prenups were once seen as the domain of the wealthy and famous, they are becoming increasingly common among all couples. In fact, many family law attorneys recommend that couples consider a prenup regardless of their financial situation, as it can provide clarity and peace of mind for both parties.
To be valid, a prenuptial agreement must be in writing and signed by both parties prior to the wedding. The terms of the agreement must also be fair and reasonable and not unduly influenced by one party. If one party is found to have coerced or pressured the other into signing the agreement, it may be deemed invalid.
It’s important to note that a prenup does not supersede state divorce laws, and there are certain provisions that cannot be included in a prenuptial agreement. For example, child custody and support cannot be addressed in a prenup, as these matters are typically decided by a judge based on the best interests of the child.
While discussing the possibility of a prenup may not be the most romantic aspect of wedding planning, it can be an important step in building a strong and stable foundation for a relationship. By laying out clear expectations and responsibilities, a prenup can help both parties feel secure and protected in their marriage, even in the face of potential future challenges.