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Frequently Asked Questions

What is a Prenuptial Agreement?A Prenuptial Agreement sorts out current and future financial and property issues before marriage. In general, it sets out who the parties are, describes their current property and debts, and explains how all current and prospective property will be dealt with in the event of a breakup.

This Agreement also deals with issues such as spousal support, inheritance, and dependent children.
Can I create a prenup if I'm already married?Prenuptial Agreements are contracts that are executed before marriage to specify how to divide current and future property in the event of a breakup. You cannot create a Prenuptial Agreement after you are married, but you can create a Postnuptial Agreement. A Postnuptial Agreement is similar to a prenup but may offer less asset protection because once you are married, many of your assets could already be considered marital property.

Your Prenuptial Agreement

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PRENUPTIAL AGREEMENT

THIS PRENUPTIAL AGREEMENT (the "Agreement") MADE ON THIS 10th day of December, 2016

BETWEEN:

______________________
of __________,
__________, the State of Alabama, __________

- AND -

______________________
of __________,
__________, in the State of Alabama, __________

  1. BACKGROUND
  2. This Agreement is made between ______________________ and ______________________ (collectively the "Parties" and individually a "Party") who are contemplating marriage each to the other.
  3. The Parties intend for this Agreement to become effective upon their marriage pursuant to the laws of the State of Alabama, including any Uniform Premarital Agreement Act, or other applicable laws, adopted by the State of Alabama.
  4. The Parties wish to enter into this Agreement to provide for the status, ownership, and division of property between them, including future property owned or to be acquired by either or both of them.
  5. The Parties further wish to affix their respective rights and liabilities that may result from this relationship.
  6. The Parties recognize the possibility of unhappy differences that may arise between them. Accordingly, the Parties desire that the distribution of any property that either or both of them may own will be governed by the terms of this Agreement and, insofar as the statutory or case law permits, intend that any statutes that may apply to them, either by virtue of Federal or State legislation, will not apply to them.
  7. The Parties acknowledge that they have been provided with a reasonable period of time to review this Agreement.
  8. The Parties also acknowledge that they have had the opportunity to retain their own lawyer and to receive independent legal advice regarding the terms of this Agreement.
  9. The Parties have disclosed to their satisfaction all assets and liabilities that each may have and voluntarily and expressly waive any other rights to disclosure of the property or financial obligations of each other beyond the disclosure provided.
  10. Each Party agrees and affirms THAT:
    1. The Parties did execute the Agreement voluntarily;
    2. This Agreement was not unconscionable when it was executed;
    3. Prior to execution of the Agreement, both Parties were provided a fair and reasonable disclosure of the property or financial obligations of the other Party;
    4. They have, or reasonably could have had, an adequate knowledge of the property or financial obligations of the other Party; and
    5. They entered into this Agreement freely and under no duress or undue influence on their decision by the other Party.
  11. The Parties acknowledge that this Agreement will continue upon termination of marriage whether by death, divorce, or otherwise.

NOW THEREFORE in consideration of the upcoming marriage, and in consideration of the mutual promises and covenants contained in this Agreement, the Parties agree as follows:

  1. PROPERTY
  2. Any Separate Property owned by a Party will be and remain property of that Party and the other Party will have no rights and interests in that property.
  3. In the event of the Parties separating, or upon the death of a Party, all Shared Property will be deemed to be owned equally and each Party will be entitled to fifty percent (50%) of the net equity of the property, regardless of the initial or ongoing proportion of each Party's investment, unless the Parties have agreed otherwise in writing.
  4. Nothing in this Agreement will prevent or invalidate any gift, or transfer for value, from one Party to the other of present or future property.
  5. Unless a Party can reasonably show that he or she solely owns a piece of property, where either Party commingles jointly owned property with Separate Property, any commingled property will be presumed to be Shared Property.
  6. DEBTS
  7. Any Separate Debt owed by a Party will be and remain the debt of that Party and the other Party will have no financial obligations owing with respect to the debt.
  8. In the event of a separation, or upon the death of a Party, all Shared Debt will be deemed to be owed equally and each Party will be financially responsible for 50% of any jointly acquired or jointly held debt, regardless of the initial or ongoing proportion of each Party's borrowed amount, unless the Parties have agreed otherwise in writing.
  9. MATRIMONIAL PROPERTY RELEASE
  10. The Parties covenant and agree that they are aware of the equitable distribution laws of the State of Alabama, and that it is their intention that the equitable distribution laws will not apply to the status, ownership, interest and division of their property, either jointly or separately owned, nor to their future property, whether real or personal, and owned by either one or both of them, and the Parties further covenant and agree that it is their desire and intent by the terms of this Agreement to contract out of the equitable distribution laws of the State of Alabama, and to make a full and final settlement of all matters of property, both real and personal, previously and presently owned by either of the Parties or to be acquired by either of the Parties in the future.
  11. DOWER, CURTESY AND HOMESTEAD RELEASE
  12. Each Party releases all dower, curtesy and homestead rights under any statute of the State of Alabama, or any other jurisdiction whatsoever, that, but for this agreement, each would have in and to property in the name of the other, or in their names jointly or as tenants in common.
  13. SUPPORT
  14. In the event of a separation the Parties agree that spousal support may be payable to one of the Parties on the basis of the Party's financial circumstances at the time of separation or otherwise. It is understood and accepted by each Party that a determination of spousal support will be done so under the appropriate Federal or State laws.
  15. ESTATES AND TESTAMENTARY DISPOSITION
  16. Nothing in this Agreement will limit or affect any rights that each may acquire as spouse or surviving spouse in the property, assets or estate of the other spouse.
  17. Nothing in this Agreement will invalidate or prevent either Party from naming the other as a beneficiary by will or other testamentary disposition.
  18. SEVERABILITY
  19. Should any portion of this Agreement be held by a court of law to be invalid, unenforceable, or void, such holding will not have the effect of invalidating or voiding the remainder of this Agreement, and the Parties agree that the portion so held to be invalid, unenforceable, or void, will be deemed amended, reduced in scope, or otherwise stricken only to the extent required for purposes of validity and enforcement in the jurisdiction of such holding.
  20. INTENTION OF THE PARTIES
  21. Notwithstanding that the Parties acknowledge and agree that their circumstances at the execution of this Agreement may change for many reasons, including but without limiting the generality of the foregoing, the passage of years, it is nonetheless their intention to be bound strictly by the terms of this Agreement at all times.
  22. DUTY OF GOOD FAITH
  23. This Agreement creates a fiduciary relationship between the Parties in which each Party agrees to act with the utmost of good faith and fair dealing toward the other in all aspects of this Agreement.
  24. FURTHER DOCUMENTATION
  25. The Parties agree to provide and execute such further documentation as may be reasonably required to give full force and effect to each term of this Agreement.
  26. TITLE/HEADINGS
  27. The headings of this Agreement form no part of it, and will be deemed to have been inserted for convenience only.
  28. ENUREMENT
  29. This Agreement will be binding upon and will enure to the benefit of the Parties, their respective heirs, executors, administrators, and assigns.
  30. GOVERNING LAW
  31. The laws of the State of Alabama will govern the interpretation of this Agreement, and the status, ownership, and division of property between the Parties wherever either or both of them may from time to time reside.
  32. TERMINATION OR AMENDMENT
  33. This Agreement may only be terminated or amended by the Parties in writing signed by both of them.
  34. ENTIRE AGREEMENT
  35. The Agreement constitutes the entire agreement and understanding between the Parties to this Agreement and supersedes all prior communications, contracts, or agreements between these Parties with respect to the subject matter addressed in this Agreement, whether oral or written.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF the Parties have hereunto set their hands and seals on the 10th day of December, 2016.

SIGNED, SEALED AND DELIVERED
In the presence of:

_____________________________
Witness
Printed Name: _________________

_____________________________
Witness
Printed Name: _________________

________________________
______________________



_____________________________
Witness
Printed Name: _________________

_____________________________
Witness
Printed Name: _________________

________________________
______________________


CERTIFICATE OF INDEPENDENT LEGAL ADVICE


THE STATE OF ALABAMA
COUNTY OF
_________________


I, _________________________, of the City of ___________________, in the State of Alabama, Attorney, DO HEREBY CERTIFY:

THAT I was this day consulted in my professional capacity by ______________________, named in the within instrument, being a Prenuptial Agreement, separate and apart from ______________________, as to his legal rights and liabilities under the terms and conditions of it, and that I acted solely for him, and explained fully to him the nature and effect of the said Prenuptial Agreement and he did execute it in my presence, and did acknowledge and declare that he was executing it of his own volition and without any fear, threats, compulsion or influence from ______________________, or any other person.

DATED at the City of ___________________, in the State of Alabama, this _____ day of _________, 20___.

________________________
ATTORNEY
Print Name: _________________





I, ______________________, the person named in the annexed Agreement, hereby acknowledges the foregoing this ____day of ______________20___.


________________________
______________________


CERTIFICATE OF INDEPENDENT LEGAL ADVICE


THE STATE OF ALABAMA
COUNTY OF
_________________


I, _________________________, of the City of ___________________, in the State of Alabama, Attorney, DO HEREBY CERTIFY:

THAT I was this day consulted in my professional capacity by ______________________, named in the within instrument, being a Prenuptial Agreement, separate and apart from ______________________, as to her legal rights and liabilities under the terms and conditions of it, and that I acted solely for her, and explained fully to her the nature and effect of the said Prenuptial Agreement and she did execute it in my presence, and did acknowledge and declare that she was executing it of her own volition and without any fear, threats, compulsion or influence from ______________________, or any other person.

DATED at the City of ___________________, in the State of Alabama, this _____ day of _________, 20___.

________________________
ATTORNEY
Print Name: _________________





I, ______________________, the person named in the annexed Agreement, hereby acknowledges the foregoing this ____day of ______________20___.


________________________
______________________


Special Notes on Prenuptial Agreements governed by the State of Alabama

While there are fewer formal requirements for prenuptial agreements drafted in the State of Alabama compared to other states, it is best to sign the Prenuptial Agreement in front of your own lawyer and to receive a Certificate of Independent Legal Advice from your lawyer. Alternatively, you should consider seeing a notary public or at the minimum sign the document in front of one or two witnesses.

Prenuptial Agreement

Alternate Names:

A Prenuptial Agreement is also known as:

  • Premarital Agreement
  • Antenuptial Agreement
  • Domestic Contract
  • Marriage Contract
  • Prenup
  • Prenupt

What is a Prenuptial Agreement?

A Prenuptial Agreement (or prenup) is a contract that you and your future husband or wife create prior to becoming legally married.

It dictates the financial responsibilities of each party and legally divides the monetary obligations of each spouse upon separation or death. Prenuptial Agreements include terms such as division of properties, spousal support, and estate planning to protect the assets of each spouse, both during and after a legal relationship.

For individuals who want to protect themselves but who will not be legally married, Cohabitation Agreements or Common-Law Agreements can serve as a solution.

What a Prenup Covers

Prenuptial Agreements are used to protect any personal assets in the case of divorce, separation or death by creating personalized terms as opposed to the terms governed by law.

Who Should Have a Prenup

Prenuptial Agreements are generally recommended if you:

  • have personal assets that you wish to separate from any shared assets with your future husband or wife
  • would like to protect a personal inheritance, business, or investment
  • have children from a previous relationship
  • would like to avoid any conflict or confusion in the event of a divorce, separation, or death of a spouse

What You Can Include in Your Prenup

Prenuptial Agreements generally cover any and all financial matters. This includes division of properties, income, businesses, investments, inheritances, and other similar assets. Prenups can also cover aspects of alimony/spousal support.

They cannot include terms regarding child custody, child visitation, or child support for existing or future children.

What Will Void Your Prenup

Prenuptial Agreements are invalid if:

  • there was a failure to disclose all assets
  • there is evidence of fraud
  • there is evidence of duress or unfairness
  • it includes content that is illegal or against public policy
  • it was signed involuntarily
  • it includes content that is perceived to promote divorce

Related Documents:

  • Cohabitation or Common Law Agreement: Offers financial terms to couples who have decided not to marry but who want to protect their personal assets.
  • Roommate Agreement: Used to divide expenses such as rent and utilities between roommates.
  • Last Will and Testament: Ensures that you have control over your asset division in the event of your death. Your Will should be updated shortly after any major life event, such as a marriage or separation.
  • Separation Agreement: A contract that will allow you and your spouse to divide your assets, properties, and debts, and to agree on custody and visitation arrangements prior to your divorce judgement.

Related Articles:

Frequently Asked Questions:

Prenuptial Agreement FAQ
Prenuptial Agreement Sample

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