Postnuptial agreements are contracts entered into after the marriage of a couple. These agreements are sometimes referred to as post marital or antenuptial agreements as well. They are similar to prenuptial agreements as their purposes are the same, as they seek to provide a plan and protect the parties upon the dissolution of a marriage. If you are seeking to protect yourself and your partner and desire to have a plan in the rare and unfortunate case of your divorce, contact a Florida Divorce Attorney today who can discuss with you the reasons and benefits to a postnuptial agreement.
Although contracting with your spouse, does remove some romance and may cause some initial tension, there are many benefits to a postnuptial agreement. For instance, this agreement can discuss the division and protection of certain assets and liabilities upon dissolution or death of a partner. If no agreement exists, your property will be subject to equitable division by the court. With a postnuptial agreement, you are in full control of your assets and property and which items you will retain rights to, if you and your spouse choose to divorce or in the unfortunate case of a spouse’s death. Further, the postnuptial agreement can designate certain duties and obligations to parties during the marriage. You and your spouse can determine who will be responsible for household expenses or mortgage payments or how the parties will file their tax returns.
Within these agreements, you must discuss a large array of details with your partner in order to formulate a full and complete agreement. Each party must consider their rights to equitable distribution of property, money earned during the marriage, alimony, retirement plans, and whether or not they are willing to waive these rights in this agreement. If waiver does occur, it must be done voluntarily. However, one item that may not be waived or addressed in a postnuptial agreement is child support or child custody. Florida law prohibits the waiver or designation of child custody in any pre or post marital agreement.
Finally, there are certain requirements of this formal contract that must be adhered to in order to be valid and enforceable. In any contract there must be sufficient consideration. In a premarital agreement, the marriage satisfies this requirement however, in a postnuptial agreement you are already married. Therefore, the mutual promises between parties waving or establishing rights is considered satisfactory consideration. Further, the court requires there to be full financial disclosure between the parties prior to entering this agreement. Failure to reveal all assets and debts to a partner can create a voidable postnuptial agreement. Therefore, it is important to reveal all finances to your attorney as well as your partner. Finally, the postnuptial agreement must be in writing and signed by the parties with two witnesses.
Postnuptial agreements are common; however, it is crucial they are done properly and precisely. Your Florida Divorce Attorney will ensure you are protected in this agreement and all formalities are adhered to; in the case you must enforce this agreement in court.
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