A premarital agreement (also known as a prenuptial agreement) is a contract that a couple may enter into before their marriage. This contract can preemptively address each spouse’s rights to property acquired before and during the marriage, forgoing traditional community property laws if the marriage ends. It can also address spousal support, the creation of a will, life insurance benefits, and any other matter that does not violate the law or public policy.
Premarital agreements are more common than people think. They can provide certainty for people who want to get married, especially when there is wealth involved, business interests, or either spouse has children from a prior marriage. It lets them enter their marriage with confidence. And should the marriage end, the agreement resolves many of the issues that the couple would have spent time and money fighting over.
Premarital Agreements are Enforceable
One of the key features of a premarital agreement is that it is legally enforceable. This means that if the marriage ends, either spouse can bring the agreement before the court to enforce its terms. A spouse’s failure to abide by the terms of a premarital agreement can be held in contempt if they do not abide by the court’s order.
There are exceptional circumstances in which a court may decide not to enforce an agreement, or terms of an agreement. This includes:
- When an agreement provides for less child support than a child is entitled under the state’s child support laws.
- When an agreement eliminates or minimizes alimony to the point that a spouse is destitute or reliant on public support.
- When an agreement contains provisions that are illegal or violate public policy.
- An agreement was not voluntarily executed.
- An agreement that was “unconscionable” when it was executed.
- When a party did not provide a fair and reasonable disclosure of property or debt before the execution of the agreement.
Contact Viloria, Oliphant, Oster & Aman L.L.P.
Viloria, Oliphant, Oster & Aman L.L.P. provides premier family law representation to men and women who want to create a clear, enforceable prenuptial agreement. Our well-respected attorneys are knowledgeable, meticulous professionals who can help you protect your legal interests. Call Viloria, Oliphant, Oster & Aman L.L.P. today at (775) 210-8178 to consult with an attorney or contact our office through our website.