Many people have a misconception about when a postnuptial agreement is needed. That is, it is not only necessary if you and your spouse anticipate a divorce in the future. But rather, it may be necessary to better strengthen the financial relationship between you and your spouse. Follow along to find out under what circumstances you may need a postnuptial agreement and how one of the proficient Hudson County family law attorneys at Greenberg & Walden, LLC, can offer sound legal advice.
What is considered a valid postnuptial agreement?
First of all, a postnuptial agreement is considered a contract between you and your spouse that maps out how you will divide your assets and determine your financial obligations toward one another in the event of a divorce. This is different from a prenuptial agreement only in that this is signed while you are already married instead of before your marriage.
You and your spouse may create a postnuptial agreement regardless of whether you already have a prenuptial agreement. There are certain guidelines that this contract must heed for it to be considered valid. Such guidelines include the following:
- The terms and conditions must be fair and reasonable for both parties.
- Both parties must have a fair and reasonable amount of time to make an informed decision on whether to sign.
- Neither party can be manipulated, coerced, tricked, or pressured to sign.
- Both parties must have separate legal counsel or waive their right to legal counsel in writing.
- Both parties must fully disclose their financial status and assets before it is time to sign.
You and your spouse must abide by these guidelines. If not, this contract will not be acknowledged by the New Jersey family court when they are making decisions regarding your asset division and financial obligations.
Under what circumstances do I need a postnuptial agreement?
Without further ado, you and your spouse may want to sign a postnuptial agreement for the following reasons:
- You and your spouse may opt for a divorce but want to attempt to work things out first.
- You and your spouse may opt for a divorce and want to control your asset distribution and financial obligations.
- Your and your spouse’s relationship is being hurt by your financial insecurities.
- You and your spouse want to stay together but financially separate yourselves.
- You and your spouse want to adjust or add to the financial conditions stated in your prenuptial agreement.
- You and your spouse want to supersede certain state laws surrounding your estate plans.
- You and/or your spouse want to protect the child support you are receiving from a previous relationship.
- You and/or your spouse experience a significant financial change (i.e., receiving a job promotion, large inheritance, large investment opportunity, etc).
- You and your spouse experience an altered marital dynamic (i.e., one of you becomes a stay-at-home parent, etc).
For additional advice, contact a talented Hudson County family law attorney today.