Documentation - Marital Property Agreements
Marital Property Agreements
Marital property agreements, either premarital (created before the wedding) or post-marital (created during the marriage), can identify and clarify the intended marital property rights of the parties before conflicts arise during the marriage.
Premarital – Prospective spouses can enter into a written agreement before the marriage outlining their respective property rights. Such agreements are particularly important when one party comes into the marriage with a substantial separate estate owned before the marriage. The agreement helps preserve an individual's separate estate by clearly identifying the pre-marital assets, and even agreeing that the income from such assets will remain the separate property. The parties may even agree that NO community estate will be accumulated during the marriage, and therefore, in the event of a divorce, there would be nothing for the courts to divide.
The purpose of a premarital agreement is to limit the use of the elective share. To be enforceable, it must meet these requirements:
- It must be in writing (not oral) and signed by both parties.
- It must be preceded by a full and accurate disclosure of each party's net worth.
- It must be willingly executed by both parties.