What things must be in a prenuptial agreement for it to be iron-clad? When a couple is getting a divorce, one of the issues that will need to be resolved is the division of their marital property, which is the property and assets that the couple obtained after they got married. When it comes to the division of marital property, Alabama is an equitable division state. This means that the Circuit Court judge will divide marital property equitably between the two parties, if the couple was not able to reach an agreement and do an uncontested divorce in Tuscaloosa County, or anywhere else in Alabama, in an equitable manner. However, equitably does not necessarily mean equally. Instead, it means that the judge will try to divide the property as fairly and reasonably as possible.
In addition to marital property, there is also separate property, which is any property that a party already owned before they entered their marriage. Separate property is usually awarded to the party that originally owned it, but depending on the circumstances, the judge may decide that it is necessary to consider certain pieces of separate property to be marital property. This means that your spouse may be awarded your separate property even though you obtained it before you got married. To avoid this, it is recommended that you speak with your future spouse, before getting married, about the separate property that you will be entering the marriage with. If you want to protect your separate property, you and your future spouse should consider a prenuptial agreement.
A prenuptial agreement is where two parties agree, in writing, how their separate assets will be divided between the two of them in the event that they ever get a divorce. It is a legally binding contract that two parties enter into before they get married. Each party must fully understand all of its terms before they sign, which is another requirement in order for the agreement to be enforceable, and it is even better if the parties can get their agreement notarized. There are many reasons that a couple may wish to have a prenuptial agreement, but these agreements are especially important if one of the parties will be entering into the marriage with substantially more or higher-valued assets compared to the other party.
For a prenuptial agreement to be considered “iron-clad” in a future divorce in Jefferson County, or anywhere else in Alabama, the prenuptial agreement should list all separate property that each party owns to the best of their knowledge. The more detailed and specific, the better. They should list assets like their cars, land, houses, etc. Both parties must disclose any debts they may have, too, because this ensures that one party will not be responsible for the other party’s debt. For example, this would be especially important for parties who have significant student loan debt. The parties should also include any savings or spending plans, and they should be very specific about where and how much each of their incomes will go. This is usually where retirement is included in the agreement. They may also choose to include a term for alimony instead of leaving it up to the judge if they do get a divorce later on. The parties should also include any children from a previous marriage to ensure they will be considered in certain circumstances like if their parent died.
Prenuptial agreements require certain terms to be included. It is best to hire an experienced Birmingham divorce attorney to ensure that your agreement will be legally enforceable. Contact us today, and one of our prenuptial agreement attorneys will assist you with the process of creating an enforceable agreement.
Attorney Steven A. Harris regularly blogs in the areas of family law, bankruptcy, probate, and real estate closings on this website. Mr. Harris tries to provide informative information to the public in easily digestible formats. Hopefully you enjoyed this article and feel free to supply feedback. We appreciate our readers & love to hear from you!