Pre-Nuptial Agreements, also known as Antenuptial Agreements may be very important prior to marriage for some people. These agreements are usually made in anticipation of second marriages where children from a prior marriage require protection, or the party receiving property from a prior marriage wishes to maintain that property separately from the new marriage. In other situations, a prenuptial agreement may be made to protect wealth from the family of origin in an effort to protect premarital assets or future inheritance.
Prenuptial agreements are made for the purposes of specifically outlining the precise disposition of property in the event of divorce or the death of the future spouses. Spousal support in the event of divorce can also be determined by prenuptial agreements.
Are pre-nuptial agreements enforceable?
Prenuptial agreements have been found to be valid and enforceable by Michigan law. To maintain enforceability, these agreements must be made with both parties having had representation, there should be no signs of duress, each party must fully disclose and list every single asset or property they will be bringing into the marriage and explicitly state how each and every asset will be disposed of in the event of divorce or death. In the event of divorce, when reviewing and enforcing prenuptial agreements, courts are required to look at the fairness at the time they were signed, as well as the fairness at the time they are being enforced.
Every marriage situation is unique requiring specialized knowledge on the part of attorneys in domestic relations laws, expertise in drafting and the skill for litigating enforcement of these documents. Each person contemplating a prenuptial agreement, prior to a marriage, should consult with an attorney having this variety of experience. If you are considering drafting a pre-nuptial agreement, contact Oakland County family law attorney Danielle A. Smith today at (248) 258-2828.