A great deal of costly and contentious divorce litigation is avoided when couples enter into prenuptial agreements (before marrying) or marital agreements (after marrying). These agreements change the parties’ marital property rights under Texas law. They can be used to prevent the creation of a community property estate during marriage and protect the separate property estates of each party. The agreements are formal documents that must comply with Texas law to be enforceable. Once entered into by the parties, these agreements are generally enforced by Texas courts if they meet the formalities required under the law.
Parties to these agreements must have an opportunity to consult with legal counsel, but can waive that right, and must have the opportunity to receive a full and fair disclosure of the estate of the other party, but can waive that right as well.
Eliminate Problems Before They Begin
Prenuptial and marital agreements should be considered as an option:
- By parties with high net worth
- By persons with future high earnings potential
- By parties who have blended families
- By people who may have a future risk of claims by creditors
- By parties wanting to identify separate property
- By parties wanting to avoid the creation of a community property estate
- By parties wishing to clarify and create defined support obligations like contractual alimony
- By parties wishing to eliminate future support obligations, other than child support obligations
Prenuptial agreements and marital agreements cannot be used as custody agreements. However, they can be very useful during divorce.
The lawyers at Laura Dale & Associates, have many years of experience when it comes to drafting, defending, or attacking premarital and marital agreements in Texas. We can answer all your questions about prenups or questions about postnups.
Prenuptial Agreement FAQs
Prenuptial agreements, when structured properly, can help couples avoid litigation and protect their property in the event of a divorce. Whether or not to have a prenuptial agreement is a personal decision that each couple needs to make, but an experienced attorney can answer your questions about prenuptial agreements and help you determine whether it is the right choice for you.
What are prenuptial agreements? Prenuptial agreements are formal documents that must comply with Texas law to be enforceable. They can detail what will happen to separate property that was carried into the marriage, how marital property shall be divided and how various heirs should be treated in the event that a spouse dies.
Is a lawyer necessary for a prenuptial agreement? Parties to prenuptial agreements must have an opportunity to consult with legal counsel, and must have the opportunity to receive a full and fair disclosure of the estate of the other party. These requirements can be waived, but it is not recommended. A lawyer can help you ensure you are receiving a fair deal that protects your rights, your property and your children in the event of a divorce.
Should I be considering a prenuptial agreement? Those who should consider a prenuptial agreement include individuals with a high net worth or high future earnings potential, those with blended families, parties with assets they want to keep separate, and those wishing to eliminate future support obligations.
Postnuptial Agreement FAQs
Postnuptial agreements can help parties in a marriage protect their property in the event of a divorce. Whether or not to seek a postnuptial agreement is a personal decision that each couple needs to make, but an experienced lawyer can answer your questions about postnuptial agreements and help you determine whether it is the right choice for you.
Does a postnuptial agreement cover the same issues as a prenuptial agreement? No. Postnuptial agreements are strictly limited to property while prenuptial agreements can cover everything from separate and marital property to post-divorce alimony.
How can a postnuptial agreement protect my property? A postnuptial agreement can be used to convert community property into separate property in the event of a divorce. For example, a couple can agree in a postnuptial agreement that one party should retain the house in the event of a divorce, with that house becoming separate property per the terms of the agreement.
Can other issues be brought into a postnuptial agreement? No. However, if you and your spouse do wish to divorce down the road and can reach agreement on how property, support and other issues can be handled, our attorneys can assist you with divorce planning.
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