Prenuptial and Postnuptial Agreements in Alabama

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Deciding whether or not to enter into a prenup is a highly personal decision. You may view prenups poorly, thinking they assume it means you will get a divorce. At Alabama Divorce & Family Lawyers, LLC, that is not how we see it. We find that couples who agree to prenups do so out of wanting to protect their partner and other family members. It is a recognition that something could change in the future, but the focus is on planning for a future together.

If you want to discuss prenuptial and postnuptial agreements, whether or not you have decided to enter into one, do not hesitate to speak with a prenup lawyer at Alabama Divorce & Family Lawyers, LLC. We are here to answer your questions and talk you through your concerns. We want to help you do what is best for your family and ensure you are fully aware of Alabama law.

How a Prenuptial Agreement Lawyer Can Help

An experienced prenup lawyer from Alabama Divorce & Family Lawyers, LLC can help you in a variety of ways related to prenuptial agreements and postnuptial agreements. We can represent you when you and your spouse wish to enter into such an agreement. We are highly experienced in helping future spouses negotiate fair and valid premarital agreements. We can also represent you during a divorce and either fight to uphold the contract or contest it, based on the circumstances.

Overall, a prenup attorney can help you by:

  • Advising you on the potential advantages and disadvantages of a prenup or post-nuptial agreement.
  • Representing you during prenup or postnup negotiations.
  • Reviewing a prenup or postnup you were given by your spouse or their attorney.
  • Drafting a prenup or postnup agreement.
  • Fighting to enforce a prenup or postnup agreement during a divorce.
  • Contesting a prenup or postnup agreement during a divorce when there is a basis for the contract to be void or voidable.

We are also here to answer any questions you have regarding prenups and postnups. To learn more about these legally binding contracts, you can schedule a free consultation.

Entering Into a Prenuptial Agreement in Alabama

In the event of a divorce, not every agreement is going to hold up in court. Not all prenups are considered valid under Alabama divorce law. If you wish to enter into a prenup, or you are going through a divorce and you have a prenup, then you need to be aware of the elements necessary to make it valid and legally binding.

Couples who are going to be married soon have every right in Alabama to enter into prenuptial agreements. These agreements dictate certain terms for a divorce, if the marriage were to end. That being said, prenups usually do not contain provisions regarding child custody and support, and even if they do, these provisions may not be enforceable. Prenups typically concentrate on how to handle assets and debts, including retirement plans, employee benefit plans, pensions, family businesses, family heirlooms, real estate, stocks, and other investments.

For a prenup to be valid, each party must be fully aware of each other’s assets and debts. Full disclosure is absolutely essential. If you were to file for divorce and it becomes clear that you or your spouse were not fully aware of the other’s finances when the prenup was signed, the court may throw it out.

Another element of validity for prenups is whether the contract was entered into freely by each individual. If there is evidence that you or your spouse were coerced, the contract may be deemed invalid.

Each soon-to-be spouse should receive independent advice before signing a prenup. The best way to obtain this is for each person to have legal representation. Our prenup lawyers at Alabama Divorce & Family Lawyers, LLC often represent fiancés during the negotiation and drafting of prenups. In most situations, you and your fiancé cannot and should not have the same lawyer.

If a prenup’s validity is disputed, the court will also look to see if the contract is fair, just, and equitable. If the contract heavily favors one spouse, the court may not consider it enforceable.

When You May Want a Prenup

Our prenup lawyers know deciding on whether or not to enter into a prenup or postnup is challenging. It is a practical and legal procedure that is closely intertwined with your emotions. We recommend that you genuinely consider a prenup when:

  • You or your fiancé are much wealthier than the other.
  • This is a second or subsequent marriage for you or your fiancé.
  • You or your fiancé have children from a previous relationship.
  • You or your fiancé have a high amount of debt.
  • You or your fiancé own your own business.
  • You or your fiancé have or will inherit a great deal of property.
  • You or your fiancé intend to leave the workplace and be a stay-at-home parent for a significant period of time.

Entering Into a Prenuptial Agreement After Marriage

Most soon-to-be spouses create a prenup prior to marriage. However, there are many circumstances in which a married couple wishes to enter into what is known as a post-nuptial agreement during the marriage.

A common reason for a postnup is an elopement. An unplanned marriage leaves little time to negotiate a prenup, so you do it after the marriage ceremony. You and your spouse may enter into a postnup when one of you starts a business or enters into a business arrangement. This can keep the business’s finances separate from the marital estate, and it is often used to both protect the other spouse and protect the business in case of a divorce. Another common situation is a postnuptial agreement after infidelity. If you or your spouse were unfaithful, you may agree to stay in the marriage based on certain conditions, which you outline in the postnup.

Post-nuptial agreements are closely reviewed by courts, particularly during contentious divorces or when one spouse claims a provision or the contract is unenforceable. If you want to know how to get a postnuptial agreement that will be upheld in the event of a divorce, you should speak with an experienced attorney.

Similar to drafting a prenup, you and your spouse should have your own attorneys to give you independent advice. You and your spouse should fully disclose all of your assets and debts. The postnup should be based on full disclosure and should be equitable. The provisions determining which assets and debts are each of your responsibilities do not have to be 50/50, but they should be fair. If the provisions heavily favor one party over the other, a court may be skeptical. If any of these elements are missing when a postnup is contested, it could mean a court declares it unenforceable.

Marital Settlement Agreements

Another type of contract between spouses is a marital settlement agreement. This type of contract arises in the event of a divorce. A marital settlement agreement outlines the agreed upon terms of a divorce, including in regard to the division or property, the division of retirement savings, spousal support or alimony, child custody and visitation, and child support.

You and your spouse have the right to negotiate a marital settlement on your own. You can also do so through mediation. In either case, it is best for you to have an experienced divorce attorney guide you through the negotiation process. By having an attorney, you will be fully aware of your rights and options, which can help you achieve a fair outcome to your divorce.

If you and your spouse cannot agree on all or any terms of the divorce, then a marital settlement can be drafted by the judge.

Let a Prenup Lawyer at Alabama Divorce & Family Lawyers, LLC Help You

Whether you are still considering a prenup or postnup, or it is time to begin negotiating and drafting the provisions, we are here to help. Do not hesitate to call us at (205) 255-1155 with your questions. We will schedule an initial consultation to meet with you and talk about your situation right away.

At Alabama Divorce & Family Lawyers, LLC , we are dedicated to providing objective and accurate legal information and advice to Alabama residents to ensure you gain the full protection and advantage of the law.

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