Prenuptial & Postnuptial Agreements
Understanding Marital Documents
California is a community property state. What that means is that anything
your marriage is considered fifty percent yours and fifty percent your spouses asset or debt,
regardless of the title of the asset. In addition, all income acquired during marriage is
considered fifty percent yours and fifty percent your spouses - regardless of which spouse
earned the income.
In order to protect your assets, clarify what assets and debts you each entered the marriage
with, maintain your income earned during the marriage as separate property, and make
agreements with regard to spousal support in the event of dissolution you can have an attorney
create one of the following:
- Prenuptial Agreement - an agreement must be entered into between both parties prior to the marriage, or
- Postnuptial Agreement - an agreement must be entered into between both parties during the marriage.
In order for a Prenuptial or Postnuptial Agreement to be upheld in the event of dissolution, legal
separation or death, the parties must abide by certain requirements:
- The agreement must be in writing and each party must sign the agreement,
- The parties are entitled to be provided full and reasonable disclosure of the property and financial obligations prior to signing the agreement,
- The party that is giving up rights they would be entitled to, but for the agreement, must be represented by an attorney to be sure that party understood their rights (or they must explicitly waive the representation of an attorney),
- If the party waives the right to an attorney: they must be given at least seven days to review the agreement prior to signing it and they must not have been subjected to fraud, duress, or undue influence.
- The court may also look to any other factors in determining whether the agreement was voluntarily executed.
If the agreement includes a party waiving the right to receive spousal support in the event of
dissolution or legal separation, that party must be represented by their own attorney prior to
signing the agreement. Otherwise this provision is non-enforceable.
If you are contemplating creating either a Prenuptial Agreement or a Postnuptial Agreement
there are many specific requirements that must be followed in order for the Agreement to be
upheld. Having counsel that you can count on to create a detailed and proper Prenuptial or
Postnuptial Agreement is imperative. At Barnholtz & Kugler we will walk you through the
process and be sure you are adequately protected.
As your Valencia divorce attorney, we can help you become informed about the benefits of a prenuptial and postnuptial agreement. Contact a Valencia divorce lawyer today at Barnholtz & Kugler!
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