What Can and Cannot be Covered in a Prenuptial Agreement?
No one wants to contemplate divorce before they are even married. However, prenuptial or premarital agreements aim to set specific terms in place in case the marriage comes to an end. For example, a person with an established family enterprise may seek to protect those assets from the other party during a divorce. In Alabama, there are certain limits to what can be included in a prenuptial agreement.
Inclusions in Prenuptial Agreements in Auburn, AL
Difference between Separate and Marital Property
Under AL law, specific stipulations govern the types of property that comprise separate and marital property. In case of separation by divorce of death, Alabama family courts will isolate the marital property. To avoid a court deciding what happens to your assets in the event of a divorce, you can create a prenuptial agreement beforehand.
Protections against Debts of the Other Spouse
In the absence of a prenup agreement, creditors can make claims on the marital property, although only one spouse is the debtor. Limiting your debt liability in a premarital agreement can help you avoid this situation.
Provisions to Provide for Children from Previous Relationships
A prenuptial agreement in Auburn, AL, can help you ensure that your children from a previous relationship inherit some of your property.
Allows Retaining Family Property within the Family
You can specify the manner of distribution of a family heirloom, family enterprise, or even a future inheritance in your prenuptial agreement.
Protections for Estate Plans
Prenuptial agreements are merely one element in ensuring that your estate plan is implemented according to your wishes. It is vital to create and secure other documents such as living trusts and wills as well.
Elaboration on the Responsibilities of Spouses
Prenuptial agreements are made due to various reasons. Some common ones are listed below:
- Separate enterprises
- Retirement benefits
- Income, exemptions, and claims for tax return purposes
- Household bills and expense management
- Joint bank account management
- An arrangement about investing in specific purchase or projects, such as real estate or business
- Credit card spending and payments spending
- Savings contributions
- Property distribution to surviving loved ones, including life insurance, in case of death
- Potential disagreements settlement via arbitration or mediation
Exclusions from Prenuptial Agreements in Auburn, AL
According to Alabama law, there are restrictions on what can and cannot be included in premarital agreements. Following are certain items that AL law will not allow in prenups:
Provisions on Anything Unlawful
AL law does not allow you to include anything illegal in your premarital agreement. By doing so, you risk the entire premarital agreement being set aside by a court.
Decisions on Child Custody or Child Support
An Auburn, AL prenuptial agreement cannot include child custody or child support matters. In the calculation of child support, the court will have the final say. The court assesses child support on the standard of what is in the “best interest of the child.” In such a determination, various factors come into play—matters of child support, child custody, or visitation concern public policy.
A court would usually never uphold a prenuptial agreement provision dealing with these issues. The court remains the apex authority in deciding what is in the best interest of the child and will not deny a child the right to monetary support or the chance to enjoy a relationship with a fit parent.
Provisions Encouraging Divorce
In Auburn, AL, judges will meticulously review premarital agreements to understand whether it offers a financial incentive to terminate the marriage. In case a provision can be seen as encouraging divorce, the court will set it aside. Society has an interest against divorce. Therefore, judges pay close attention to the inclusions of the prenuptial agreement to ensure that it does not offer incentives for divorce.
Information on Personal, Rather than Financial Issues
A premarital agreement in Auburn, AL, cannot include any personal preferences, such as who has what chores, where to go for the holidays, whose last name to use, details on raising kids, and what relationship to have with certain family members. The purpose of premarital agreements is to address financial matters.
Courts will not uphold any provisions on non-economic matters. If you and your partner require an agreement on such matters, it’s a judicious idea to do it in a separate document, where the court will not have the power to intercede.
Questions About the Inclusions in a Prenuptial Agreement in Auburn, AL? Speak to an Experienced Family Law Attorney
Prenuptial agreements can be advantageous to both parties as they lay down the terms of a relationship and marriage before any problems arise. At Alsobrook Law Group, we recommend that every prenup should be thoroughly reviewed by a lawyer before they are signed.
Any errors in the document could prove to be a costly mistake for one or both of the parties in the future. Speak to our skilled and knowledgeable family law attorneys in Auburn, AL today for assistance. Call today at (334) 737-3718.