Savvy couples who have assets or dependents take the time to create a prenuptial agreement before getting married. Unfortunately, if these same couples may find that the agreement does not cover all aspects of their divorce. The occurrence of this is relatively rare. However, it can be a shocking surprise for those that thought everything had been taken care of. Of course, that does not nullify the benefits of the prenuptial agreement. It simply means that all couples should effectively prepare for divorce, even those who have a prenuptial agreement.
Although marrying spouses can exclude the payment of spousal support in their prenuptial agreement, there are situations in which this agreement may be considered invalid. For example, if a spouse does not have the income or assets to support themselves under the provisions outlined in the prenuptial agreement, the judge may order the other spouse to pay spousal support. The duration and amount of this support will vary, depending on the circumstances.
Child Support and Other Child-Related Matters
Prenuptial agreements typically cover aspects of the marriage itself, like the division of property and assets. They do not apply to matters relating to children, however. This means that parents must still negotiate a parenting plan, come to an agreement on parenting time and the allocation of parental responsibilities, and determine the amount of child support to be paid. If parents cannot reach an agreement, the matter can be taken to court for litigation.
Evidence of Coercion
One of the legal stipulations of a prenuptial agreement is that both parties must enter into it voluntarily. If there is any evidence that one of the parties was coerced into signing, then the agreement could be considered invalid by the courts. This will require the couple to pursue a “traditional” divorce, which includes the equitable distribution of the couple’s marital assets.
Prenuptial Agreements Still Hold Value
Even if there are aspects of your divorce that are not covered in a prenuptial agreement, it still holds value. It can smooth some of the aspects and details of your divorce, could protect certain assets, and may even save you time and money in the long run. This can be especially important if you have dependents from a previous marriage to support.
Get Skilled Legal Representation for Your Divorce
If you are planning on filing for divorce – with or without a prenuptial agreement – Sullivan Taylor, Gumina & Palmer, P.C. can help. Dedicated to your best interest, we will protect your rights and pursue the most favorable outcome for your situation. Schedule a consultation with our Naperville divorce lawyers today to ask how we can assist with your case. Call 630-665-7676 today.