Clearwater Prenuptial & Postnuptial Agreement Lawyer
If you are contemplating a prenup or postnup – or have been asked to sign one – it’s a lot. These are complicated legal contracts that will directly affect your financial rights in the event of a divorce and should not be entered into without careful consideration. A prenuptial agreement can provide you with considerable peace of mind and better protect your financial rights, and it can also honor and support your marriage – getting it right, however, is critical. An experienced Clearwater prenuptial agreement attorney can help you make the right choices for you and your unique situation.
Being Honest from the Outset
In order to create a legally binding prenuptial agreement, both you and your spouse will need to share your personal financial information regarding both your assets and your debts. This helps to ensure that you’re both able to make important decisions about your financial future without being blindsided. Additionally, however, it can help set the stage for more open communications throughout your marriage. Because divorce and money problems often go hand in hand, a prenup may help you avoid this fate.
Coercion Can Void a Prenup
Both parties must enter the prenuptial contract freely – and with all the necessary information available to each of them. If the court determines that coercion, fraud, or threats were used in the creation of a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement, it will not be upheld. The less time there is between when the prenup is drafted and signed, and when the wedding takes place, the more likely the court is to take notice. To ensure that your prenuptial agreement is legally binding, it’s important that all the following are true:
- That you each have your own premarital agreement lawyer
- That you are both transparent about your separate finances
- That you both had the time necessary to make the best decisions for each of you
If you are moving forward with a prenup or postnup, you want it to be legally binding, which means that you need professional legal counsel in your corner.
A Note about Postnups
There is considerable confusion about what distinguishes postnups from prenups, and the fact is that it isn’t much. The primary difference is that prenuptial agreements are written and signed before a marriage takes place, but they are not executed – they do not go into effect – until the couple marries. Postnuptial agreements are written and executed during a marriage, which means that couples must be that much more careful in terms of avoiding any taint of coercion. Prenuptial agreements are complicated, and postnups can be more so. Consult with a dedicated postnup lawyer today.
Primary Financial Concerns
There are a variety of primary financial concerns that frequently inspire prenuptial and postnuptial agreements.
Children and Inheritance
If you have children from another relationship, their inheritance can be affected by your marriage. A prenuptial agreement, however, can help to ensure that they inherit according to your wishes.
When one spouse has far more debt than the other, it can cause concern. If the marriage does end in divorce and the debt has commingled with your marital property, which is not uncommon, both spouses will likely be on the hook for what is considered their equitable share of the debt. If the debt is student loan debt that supports a lucrative career, it can benefit both spouses over a long marriage. If, however, the marriage ends in divorce, the spouse who is saddled with the additional debt may have benefitted very little – if at all – from it.
As mentioned, it’s not difficult for separate assets and debts to commingle and thus negate their separate nature. A solid prenup, however, can help you define and protect your separate assets early on. The kinds of situations in which this is especially beneficial include:
- If you own a business on your own or with someone else
- If you are a partner in a business enterprise
- If your family has considerable wealth and you stand to inherit
- If you are part of a family business
- If you have considerable assets
Matters that Are Off the Table
The law is very exacting when it comes to prenuptial agreements, and there are certain issues that a prenup cannot address, including:
Your Child Custody Arrangements
The court always determines issues related to child custody arrangements with the children’s best interests – at the time – in mind. Because child custody arrangements can’t be predetermined, they cannot be included in prenuptial agreements.
The State of Florida has careful calculation guidelines for determining child support that must be adhered to. Only if the child support terms included in your prenuptial agreement exceed what is required by the state will they be honored.
While alimony can be addressed in your prenup or postnup, it cannot be used to cheat the recipient or would-be recipient out of support that he or she needs. If any of the following apply, all or part of the agreement may be void:
- If the terms mean that the recipient will require assistance from the state
- If the terms leave the recipient destitute
- If the terms make the division of assets very lopsided
An Experienced Clearwater Prenuptial & Postnuptial Agreement Attorney Is on Your Side
If you are preparing to marry or are married and have questions or concerns that relate to either prenuptial or postnuptial agreements, addressing them with a seasoned prenup attorney is the best way to help ensure that your financial rights are well protected. Chantale Suttle at JustPrenups.com in Clearwater is a trusted prenup lawyer who dedicates her impressive practice to helping clients like you resolve their prenup and postnup concerns favorably – while supporting their marriages. We are on your side, so please do not put off contacting or calling us at 800-959-1614 today to learn more about what we can do to help you.