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Do I Need a Postmarital Agreement?

Posted on in Prenuptial Agreements

Texas divorce lawyerMany couples choose to avoid entering into prenuptial agreements because they think it represents a lack of faith in the couple’s future. This failure to create a premarital agreement can have serious consequences if the marriage later dissolves. Fortunately, even after a couple is married, the parties can still enter into an agreement, in which they decide how certain assets will be divided in the event of a divorce. This type of document is known as a postmarital agreement and is an important tool for couples who have diverse or significant assets. However, there are certain requirements that must be met for postmarital agreements to be considered valid, so if you are thinking about drafting your own postmarital agreement, it is critical to retain and consult with an experienced high asset divorce attorney.

The Benefits of Postmarital Agreements

Drafting a postmarital agreement gives the parties involved the opportunity to assess their separate and marital property, including unique assets like antiques and jewelry, as well as debt, expenses, and spending habits. These agreements, like premarital agreements, allow the parties to not only identify assets but also to convert those assets from marital property to separate property or vice versa. Couples are also permitted to address the following topics:

  • Spousal support;
  • Tax liabilities;
  • Responsibility for debts;
  • How certain assets will be divided in the event of divorce;
  • The roles, responsibilities, and division of property for a family business; and
  • How assets will be divided upon the death of one of the parties.

Validity and Enforceability

Postmarital agreements will only be enforceable if the document is in writing and signed by both individuals and:

  • Both parties have the requisite legal capacity to enter into the contract;
  • Both parties entered into the agreement voluntarily;
  • There was a fair and full disclosure of all debts and assets by both parties unless a valid waiver was signed; and
  • The agreement is not in violation of public policy or state law, or unconscionable.

Even if a postmarital agreement is considered valid, it can be amended or revoked any time, but only if the changes are recorded in writing and signed by both individuals.

Reasons for Entering into a Postmarital Agreement

There are a number of reasons to enter into a postmarital agreement, the most common of which include:

  • Ensuring that a family business remains in the hands of a family member;
  • Protecting children, obligations, and property from prior marriages;
  • Protecting one spouse from debt incurred by the other; and
  • Providing security for those involved in a troubled relationship.

Regardless of the reason for entering into a postmarital agreement, these types of contracts work best when parties tailor them to their specific circumstances, making it especially important for couples to avoid entering into form contracts without first speaking with an attorney.

Call Today for an Initial Consultation

An experienced high asset divorce attorney can ensure that your postmarital agreement is enforceable and that your interests are protected. Please contact The Law Offices of William D. Powers to learn more about your legal options from a dedicated Round Rock high asset divorce lawyer. A member of our legal team is standing by and eager to help you throughout your case.

 

Sources:

http://www.statutes.legis.state.tx.us/Docs/FA/htm/FA.4.htm

http://www.dallasbar.org/sites/default/files/creating_attacking_and_defending_pre-marital_and_post-marital_agreements_11272012.docx__0.pdf

The Law Offices of William D. Powers

8911 N. Capital of Texas Highway, Building 2, Suite 2105, Austin, TX 78759