Frequently Asked Questions About Premarital Agreements
Premarital agreements are very beneficial contracts that can protect your rights in the event of divorce, but they are also largely misunderstood. Premarital agreements are no longer thought of as the romance-killers that they once were, and people do not always understand what they can and cannot include. If you are getting married and are thinking about a premarital agreement, it is crucial that you understand these documents. Below, our Orlando family lawyer outlines the most frequently asked questions about premarital agreements, and the answers to them.
What are Premarital Agreements?
Premarital agreements are legal contracts that outline the separate and marital property the couple owns. These provisions make it easier to divide property in the event of divorce. A premarital agreement may also include provisions for alimony. Each party must enter into the premarital agreement voluntarily, and both people must provide full disclosure of their assets and liabilities. These contracts are also only legally binding if they are in writing.
Do All Couples Need a Premarital Agreement?
A premarital agreement will make any divorce easier, as it outlines what each party will walk away with after a divorce. However, there are some situations in which a premarital agreement is particularly important. These are as follows:
- You own separate assets that need protection
- You own a business
- You or your future spouse has children from a previous marriage
- You have reason to believe alimony will be an issue in the event of divorce
When any of the above situations applies, you should always speak to a family lawyer about drafting a premarital agreement.
What Can You Include in a Premarital Agreement?
Under Florida law, anything that does not violate public policy can usually be included in a premarital agreement. Some of the most common terms included are as follows:
- The authority of each spouse to manage assets and liabilities during the marriage
- How property is divided in the event of divorce
- The amount and duration of alimony upon divorce
- The division of pensions, retirement accounts, and life insurance policies
The terms included in a premarital agreement will depend on the situation of the couple and what is most important to them.
What Cannot Be Included in a Premarital Agreement?
Again, anything that violates public policy or that is deemed highly unfair cannot be included in a premarital agreement. A premarital agreement also cannot dictate terms about child custody or child support. If the couple does get divorced, a judge will make decisions about these terms and will only consider what is in the child’s best interests.
Do You Need a Family Lawyer in Orlando To Draft a Premarital Agreement?
It is a common misconception that premarital agreements are straightforward legal documents. Unfortunately, they are not. If the contract is not properly drafted, it may be deemed unenforceable, leaving you without the protection you thought it provided. If you are about to get married, our Orlando family lawyer at Anderson & Ferrin can help you draft an agreement that will protect your future interests. Call us today at 407-412-7041 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation.