Pre-nuptials, or pre-marital agreements, were once reserved for only the wealthiest people. They are more and more common even among those without large financial portfolios. Couples who may choose pre-marital planning include those who have been married previously and want to ensure their property is documented prior to a second marriage. Those who have received a large inheritance, or expect to do so through a trust fund, may also choose this option. People who are marrying out of their income bracket may also want to use pre-marital planning in order to keep their marital assets separate from their business assets.
As San Diego Family Law Experts, we can either draft a pre-nuptial agreement or review an agreement that another attorney has drafted. Not only can we help our clients understand California law, but we can explain where state laws differ from those pertaining to pre-marital agreements. We do everything we can to ensure you understand what is permissible and what is not permissible pertaining to pre-marital planning. We also ensure the agreement between both parties meets state requirements and can be enforced should it become necessary to do so.
Perhaps circumstances changed after the couple was married. Post-nuptial agreements are like pre-nuptials except the time in which they are drafted. There are a variety of reasons why a couple may decide to have a post-nuptial agreement drafted. Suppose there is a business that would be considered community property if the couple divorced. Establishing a post-nuptial agreement would protect the business from being affected by the divorce. This type of agreement is legally binding and must only be entered into voluntarily. It is also important that both parties fully understand the consequences of signing this agreement. Should one party want out of the pre-nuptial agreement, there are specific legal proceedings necessary for this to happen.
Unless the parties have a specific contract in place, the courts will use State law to address all issues involved in a divorce. In some cases, a couple can greatly benefit from pre-nuptial, post-nuptial, or co-habitation agreements. Making agreements about how property should be divided after marriage can not only help you avoid expensive and confrontational divorce litigation, but you can also enter your commitment fully informed up-front of what each other’s financial expectations will be going into the marriage or relationship. If you would like to discuss pre-marital planning, contact our San Diego Family Lawyers to set up an interview.