Houston Family Law Firms Ensure Highly Effective Prenuptial Agreements

 By: Leena Marcos
Prenuptial Agreements are legal contracts governing areas of concern in the event of a breakdown of the marriage or the death of a spouse. As with all legal contracts they should not be entered into lightly or without the sound counsel of a Family Law Attorney knowledgeable in premarital contracts.

A Prenuptial Agreement or Prenup as it is more widely known is usually the stuff of which tabloids expound whenever there is a celebrity breakup. The question is whether premarital agreements are only the domain of Donald Trump types or are they relevant as well to the common man or woman. A prenuptial agreement is a contract and as with most contracts, it is customized to the specific directives of the people involved. Therefore, the answer is yes, a Prenup is as relevant as it needs to be for everyone concerned.

A Prenup is not an agreement that should be drafted on the back of a napkin in the heat of the moment. It should be carefully considered by the couple and consulted with an attorney who concentrates on matrimonial and divorce law. Houston and Harris County residents are subject to Texas state law and should seek a Houston Family Law practitioner when considering a prenuptial agreement.

When enveloped in the emotional hold of a new love, it is likely to believe that in marriage, what is yours is mine and what is mine is yours. However, should the marriage irretrievably breakdown, a lovely premarital sentiment quickly shifts to, what is mine is mine and what is ours is mine. In this case, a Prenup agreement can address property division and support from one spouse to another.

If so desired, the agreement can also provide for a relinquishment of assets based on predetermined situations such as adultery or abandonment. The agreement can also address provisions for assets upon the death of a spouse. These same considerations can also be drafted in a Postnuptial agreement after the marriage has taken place.

Other provisions to be considered include an expiration date for the agreement, also referred to as a sunset clause and the legal venue where the agreement is to be adjudicated. Couples can choose the state where they were married to govern the stipulations of the agreement. If no clause exists then the laws of the state where the divorce is taking place will preside.

The choice of the law of one state over the other is germane to the issue of property division in divorce. There are forty-one states that center on equitable distribution and nine states that provide for community property divisions. Prenup Agreements written in an ED governed state cannot be enforced in a CP state or in reverse. It is therefore important to consult with a Houston Family Law Lawyer to determine what is or is not relevant to the construction of the agreement.

There is no such thing as an iron clad prenuptial or postnuptial agreement. Any contractual agreement is subject to legal attack especially if coercion to execute can be proven. By engaging a Houston Family Law Attorney, there is a greater assurance that the contract will contain all of the essential legal elements in order to fully serve the interests of the parties entering into same.
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