Prenuptial Agreement Attorney Phoenix AZ
Nobody enters a marriage thinking it might end in divorce, but with 2.9 divorces per thousand residents annually in Arizona, it’s a possibility. That’s why many couples enter into a prenuptial agreement prior to their wedding. These contracts protect certain assets and rights should the marriage fail to survive.
The Law Office of Cosmas Onyia is a family law firm that handles prenuptial and postnuptial agreements. If you believe you need a premarital agreement or are already married and require a postmarital agreement, call today to schedule an appointment.
What is a Prenuptial Agreement
A prenuptial or premarital agreement is a legal contract that’s executed prior to the marriage of two individuals. If one of the spouses passes or the couple is divorced, the agreement supersedes other legal practices for the distribution of property. For instance, if one or both parties enter the marriage with substantial assets, they may want to protect their wealth from division in the event of a divorce.
Sometimes, circumstances change after two people are married and one or both parties decide that they need to protect certain assets. A postnuptial agreement is similar to a prenuptial agreement, but it’s executed during the marriage instead of before.
Who Should Have a Prenuptial Agreement in Arizona?
There are many reasons why you should have a premarital agreement:
- You have significant assets to protect.
- You have substantial debt.
- You are a shareholder or partner in a small business, and the other shareholders or partners require it.
- You are the sole proprietor of a business, and you want to protect it.
- You have family heirlooms that you do not want to be divided.
- It is a condition of your family inheritance.
Checklist of Key Issues to Address in Your Agreement
Your premarital agreement should address the following issues:
- How the property you’re entering the marriage with should be distributed.
- How property that you accumulate during the marriage should be distributed.
- How you will dispense with debt accumulated before and during the marriage.
- Will the other spouse receive compensation for giving up their claim to your assets?
- Which assets will belong to children you’ve had with another party?
- Which assets should be protected in the event of a divorce?
- What will occur if there is a legal separation?
What Can’t Be Covered by Prenuptial or Postnuptial Agreement
- Child custody or child visitation
- Child support obligations
- Spousal maintenance obligations
- Any issue that violates the law
If you retain our services, Phoenix prenuptial agreement lawyer Cosmas Onyia will review your reasons for wanting a marital agreement and will ensure that the instrument he drafts will match your needs.
Amendment and Modifications to Premarital Agreements
Like most legal agreements, both premarital and postmarital agreements can be modified with the consent of both parties. This may occur if one of the spouses has changed their plans and has decided to attend college, for instance. If a spouse enters a business partnership, they can modify an agreement to protect the practice.
Frequently Asked Questions About Premarital Agreements
These are some of the most asked marital agreement questions our team answers at our office in Phoenix. Prenuptial agreement attorney Cosmas Onyia will be happy to answer your specific questions in a one-on-one consultation or with your spouse.
What should you not agree to in a prenup?
If you are uncomfortable with the conditions of a prenuptial agreement, you don’t have to sign it. Here are some red flags you should look for in marital agreements:
- The other party has not provided full financial disclosure.
- There are provisions for unborn children.
- The provisions of the agreement are unfair to you.
- You are being asked to sign without consulting your own attorney.
- Your partner has not provided you with adequate time to review the prenuptial agreement ahead of the wedding.
- Your partner is coercing or threatening you to sign the agreement.
Ultimately, you have the right to not sign a prenup or to require modifications before signing. If the marital agreement was initiated by your partner, you should have a family law attorney review the document before signing.
Can a premarital agreement be challenged?
While a prenuptial agreement is legally binding, it is not absolute. There are several ways that a spouse can contest a prenup. For example, if the agreement was signed under duress or there was deception involved, it may invalidate the agreement. Additionally, the agreement cannot invalidate legal rights. For example, if you have biological children before or during the marriage, a prenuptial agreement can’t require you to forgo visitation.
Is a premarital agreement still enforceable if we move to another country?
This largely depends on the laws of the country to which you’re moving, but if that country recognizes the legal validity of contracts executed in the United States, it should be enforceable.
What are some reasons I might want a prenuptial agreement?
Prenuptial and postnuptial agreements can prevent you from having to sell certain assets with your spouse. For instance, if you have a family property, a marital agreement can prevent you from having to sell it in the event of a divorce. If you own all or part of a business, you could lose half of your stake in it to your spouse if the marriage terminates.
Conversely, if your spouse or spouse-to-be has significant debt, it may attach to you in the absence of a legally binding marital agreement.
Family Law Attorney in Phoenix
Prenuptial agreement attorneys recognize the delicacy required when discussing a marital agreement with a spouse or spouse-to-be. Attorney Cosmas Onyia can discuss your proposed contract with you in a confidential setting or with you and your spouse if the situation requires it. Contact our Phoenix law office to discuss your premarital or postmarital agreement today.