While not the most romantic topic to discuss before a wedding, a prenuptial agreement can provide each partner with legal protection in the event of separation or divorce. This document is especially important for couples who may wish to protect assets for their children from a previous marriage or protect assets or income that they do not want to share with their upcoming spouse, without written permissions. Texas family law stipulates that all prenuptial agreements must be in writing to be considered valid and enforceable. Both parties must also sign and be fully informed of what they are signing.
What Prenups Can Protect
Prenups protect property and the ability of individual partners to make decisions regarding that property. This is particularly important with regard to family heirlooms, family money and items owned by one party prior to marriage. Family law does not mandate the distribution of heirlooms. As such, you must specifically annotate how that property is to be divided in the event of divorce or death.
A prenup will outline the financial obligations and responsibilities of each partner. It may also address the choice of religion or residence or residence location, as well as provide for monetary settlements should one spouse commit adultery. It will also state the choice of venue if you divorce.
What Prenups Cannot Protect
No legal contract or agreement can supersede state family law, such as those laws regarding child support. Additionally, legal agreements cannot protect against criminal activity. For example, if the state finds that one spouse purposely withheld information before or during the marriage or acted in a way which defrauded their partner, the courts may hold that the prenuptial agreement is not valid due to illegal activity.
Child Support and the PreNup
As stated above, a prenup cannot govern child support. All child support must meet the guidelines of the state. While it may be possible to establish educational requirements for children produced during the course of the marriage, these provisions will in no way negate the legal obligations of state mandated child support
Lastly, Your prenup may be considered invalid if both parties did not enter into the agreement with full disclosure and legal counsel. Both parties must enter into the prenup willingly and with the full understanding of all the legal requirements. It is best that each party have their own counsel when reviewing the agreement. by calling 214-351-9100. Thank you.
If you need an attorney who can draft your PreNuptial Agreement, contact one of our representatives at Goldstein & Scopellite, PC by emailing us or by calling us at 214-351-9100. Thank you.