A prenuptial agreement, also known as a premarital agreement or simply as a “prenup,” is an agreement between a couple that lays out how assets will be allocated in the event of a separation or divorce. Because marriage is considered a legally binding contract under the law, property rights will be governed under Arizona state law by default, unless other provisions are made in a prenup. Contrary to popular belief, couples who are perfectly happy and secure together often make prenuptial agreements, since they represent upfront and honest communication regarding the future of their families.
The Role of a Prenuptial Agreement
A prenuptial agreement makes arrangements for assets in the event of divorce, while also defining financial responsibilities during marriage. In Arizona, property that is acquired prior to marriage continues to be that person’s property but subsequent behavior may muddy the water and possibly create a community interest in the sole and separate property. A prenuptial agreement is a way to determine what, if any interest, is created for the community and allocate if and how that interest is to be divided, should the marriage end due to divorce. Prenuptial agreements also can address business interests and whether any business that is owed prior to marriage but continues to operate after marriage creates a community interest. Premarital agreements also can allocate how income is to be treated after marriage. Sometimes, there is a need to address the needs of children that are from other relationships and how those needs are to be met Another major role premarital agreements play is ensuring the wellbeing of children from previous or current marriages, who might otherwise lose access to their inheritance.
Drafting a Legally Enforceable Document
It is extremely important for each party to have experienced legal counsel when drafting a prenuptial agreement. By state law, both parties have the right to manage shared assets, so it is crucial for any agreements that change those terms to be legally enforceable. A prenup created without legal aid may appear unfair in the eyes of the court, and thus invalidated. The Law Offices of Janice M. Palmer, P.C. will help you and your partner reach a fair and equitable agreement that protects you both.
Agreements Made After Marriage
Less commonly known is the postnuptial, or postmarital agreement. These agreements are drafted after marriage to allow two parties to make fair arrangements for children, and to protect any new business ventures. Often included in the agreement are provisions for how inheritance will work in the event of one parent’s death or remarriage. Once again, these types of agreements can facilitate a civil transition to life after marriage, and go a long way towards alleviating any uncertainty for the future wellbeing of you and your children
Seek Out an Experienced Attorney
At the Law Offices of Janice M. Palmer, P.C. it is our goal to help you and your partner prepare for the future. We aid you in drafting fair and legally enforceable agreements that will ensure that neither party shoulders an undue burden, and that your children’s interests are protected.
For an experienced and dedicated Mesa pre/postnuptial agreement attorney, call (480) 820-4771 today.