The Keystone for Successful Postnuptial Agreements
You may become aware of growing conflict between you and your spouse. Perhaps your values or priorities in life are simply too different for the relationship to be stable. Perhaps there has been a sudden, dramatic change in your life circumstances that has caused friction between you. A postnuptial agreement may be the answer you need.
A spouse may be starting a business but does not want it to be marital property. There might have been cheating by one or both parties, but the couple does not want to divorce as a result. Postnuptial agreements can help couples work out countless issues.
What is a postnuptial agreement?
Similar to a prenuptial agreement, which is a legal contract signed by spouses-to-be before they get married, a postnuptial agreement is signed by the parties after they have begun their marriage.
Usually, the couple comes to a lawyer after recognizing that there is an area of conflict between them. The lawyer helps them draft a postnuptial contract to identify and address their disagreements. Some of the issues that are most often considered are:
- Conflicts over money, credit card debt, and spending habits
- Disputes over raising children, relations with children from a previous marriage, or disagreement over whether to have children
- Uncertainty after a major change in life, such as the loss of a job or a huge financial windfall
- One spouse’s behavioral problems, such as alcoholism, compulsive gambling, or drug abuse
- Imbalance in responsibility for home upkeep and working outside the home
The lawyer will help the couple draft an agreement between the two of them that then should be reviewed by attorneys representing each of partners. When both sides decide that the agreement is fair, the couple will sign the document, which then becomes a legal contract governing their future behavior.
Many couples find that the influence of an attorney is the best part of developing a workable postnuptial agreement. Our lawyers are skilled at resolving conflict and encouraging compromise — while negotiating an agreement that does not implode your marriage. He or she can cut through the emotional fog to help the other party understand your interests. This process of reaching a meeting of minds—necessary for creating a valid contract between spouses—is why creating a negotiated postnuptial agreement is so often effective at preserving marriages and relationships.
Although postnuptial agreements remain less common than the more familiar prenup, they are becoming more widely used. A majority of the lawyers surveyed in 2012 reported that the number of such contracts had definitely increased during the last three years.
Divorce Done Right provides family law services nationwide. To locate a postnuptial agreement lawyer near you, or to get answers to your questions about the process, call us toll-free at (866) 337-4448 or fill in the online contact form. We want the opportunity to help heal your relationship.