Most Los Angeles area couples have heard of prenuptial agreements. They are common among many couples when they want to protect their assets prior to marriage. But a postnuptial agreement may be less known. There may be reasons why a couple would consider drafting a postnuptial agreement.
Reasons for prenuptial agreements
Postnuptial agreements are agreements that are created after a marriage has occurred, usually years later. There are several reasons why a postnuptial agreement may be created:
- Anticipation of divorce or separation
- One spouse’s assets significantly change during the marriage. A spouse may receive a large inheritance and they may want that to remain separate property.
- A spouse’s behavior abruptly changes. One spouse may become abusive, or dependent on drugs or alcohol. A postnuptial agreement can help a person protect their assets in case a divorce becomes imminent.
- Modify an existing prenuptial agreement that has become outdated.
Requirements for prenuptial agreements
There are specific requirements in order for a postnuptial agreement to be valid. These include:
- Both spouses must agree to sign the agreement and cannot be forced to do so using threats, coercion, or use of physical force.
- The agreement must be fair and not be swayed in one spouse’s favor leaving the other spouse with nothing.
- Assets must be fully disclosed and if any assets are hidden the agreement is not valid.
A legal professional who is skilled in family law can help a couple who is considering drafting a postnuptial agreement. They can advise them of their options and help them draft a plan that works well for their situation.