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Prenuptial Agreement

Spousal Support

Spousal Support

Frequently Asked Questions
What is spousal support?Spousal support, also known as alimony or spousal maintenance, is money paid by one spouse to the other in the event of separation. The purpose of alimony is to help the spouse with a lower income to maintain their standard of living until they can earn a higher income to support themselves.

The amount and length of alimony payments depend on several factors, such as marriage duration, future earning potential, individual contributions during marriage, health of the parties, and more. If the spouses cannot decide on how much alimony to pay, the court determines the spousal support terms.
What if I don't decide how to handle spousal support?Addressing spousal support in your prenup is completely optional. If you don't make a decision, spousal support will be determined by applicable state or federal laws at the time of breakup.

Prenuptial Agreement Information

Alternate Names:

A Prenuptial Agreement is also known as a/an:

  • Prenup
  • Premarital Agreement
  • Antenuptial Agreement
  • Marriage Contract

What is a Prenuptial Agreement?

A Prenuptial Agreement is a contract that you and your future husband or wife create prior to becoming legally married. It is used to set out the current and future financial responsibilities of each partner in case the couple separates, divorces, or one partner passes away.

For individuals who want to protect themselves but who will not be legally married, a Cohabitation Agreement (sometimes called a Common Law Partner Agreement) can serve as a solution.

What does a Prenuptial Agreement cover?

Prenuptial Agreements generally cover any and all financial matters. This includes division of properties, income, businesses, investments, inheritances, and other similar assets.

Typically, prenups also cover the division of joint debt (for instance, debt that accrued from a joint credit card) and aspects of alimony (also known as spousal support).

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

Who should use a Prenuptial Agreement?

Most engaged couples would benefit from creating a Prenuptial Agreement before getting married. However, it is especially recommended if you:

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

Can same sex couples use LawDepot's Prenuptial Agreement?

A Prenuptial Agreement can be used by any engaged couple who can legally marry in the United States. Gay marriage is recognized in all states.

LawDepot's Prenuptial Agreement allows the two parties in the document to list themselves as same sex or male and female.

What is the difference between separate and shared property in a prenup?

A prenup typically clarifies which assets are considered separate or shared.

Separate property (sometimes called separate assets) is property owned by one partner, whereas shared property (sometimes called shared assets) is property owned by both you and your future husband or wife.

Generally, property purchased after a couple marries is considered shared property.

If the relationship ends, separate assets are retained by the partner that owns them and shared assets are divided in accordance with the terms of the Prenuptial Agreement or state law.

Can a Prenuptial Agreement be voided?

Yes, if a Prenuptial Agreement is not created properly or in good faith, it can be voided.

For instance, a Prenuptial Agreement is invalid if:

  • There was a failure to disclose all assets
  • There is evidence of fraud
  • There is evidence of duress (i.e. an action that forces another person to unwillingly comply with an agreement) or unfairness
  • It was signed involuntarily
  • It includes content that is illegal or against public policy
  • It includes content that is perceived to promote divorce or separation

You and your partner will also want to sign your Prenuptial Agreement following the proper procedure, which is to both sign in front of a witness.

A couple may wish to have their agreement reviewed by a lawyer as well. If so, keep in mind that each partner is required to get legal advice from their own lawyer (i.e. independent legal advice) to avoid issues such as duress or fraud.

Related Documents:

  • Cohabitation Agreement: protect your personal assets and create financial terms similar to a prenup when you're in a long-term relationship as opposed to a marriage
  • Roommate Agreement: divide expenses such as rent and utilities between roommates and address terms such as household rules, duties, and restrictions
  • Last Will and Testament: control how your assets are distributed after you pass away
  • Separation Agreement: create agreements regarding the division of property and debts, how child custody and visitation will be handled, and more in the event that you and your partner separate

Related Articles:

Frequently Asked Questions:

Prenuptial Agreement FAQ
Prenuptial Agreement Sample


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