Prenuptial or premarital agreements are made before a couple marries, and are used to spell out in writing a variety of issues such as separate and community property designations, division of property upon divorce, premarital debts or obligations, etc. There are issues that are expressly prohibited within a prenuptial agreement such as those affecting existing or future children. Prenuptial agreements are common in situations when one or more of the partners has children from a previous relationship, owns a business, or has a substantially higher level of income or debts than the other, among other things.
Divorce Helpline can work with you and your future partner to draft a customized prenuptial agreement that meets legal requirements and addresses both of your concerns. Creating a prenuptial agreement does not have to be an adversarial process. On the contrary, we can help provide you with the information and framework to come to a common understanding and agreement.
Post Nuptial Agreements
Postnuptial agreements are less common that prenuptial agreements, but some couples find that they can help them deal with divisive issues in a marriage or registered partnership and strengthen the relationship. At other times, they address something that has occurred in the course of the marriage impacting assets, debts, property and things of this nature. They can also help clarify concerns about asset division or spousal support upon divorce, legal separation or death of a spouse. They differ from prenuptial agreements in that the fiduciary duty of two spouses or registered partners is viewed differently under the law once a couple is legally joined and disclosure requirements are more stringent.
We have worked with couples to create postnuptial agreements that address a range of issues, including property ownership, business interests and retirement accounts. Our experienced attorneys can work with couples wishing to draft a postnuptial agreement, making sure that all of the technical aspects of the law governing these types of contracts are properly addressed. Using the same philosophy and approach we take with mediation, we can help couples successfully navigate the path to a postnuptial agreement without undue stress or divisiveness.
Many couples, including same-sex couples, who choose to live together but not get married or legally joined find it beneficial to have a Cohabitation Agreement. This agreement spells out particulars related to joint and separate property, assets and debts during the relationship, and how these issues, along with support, will be handled should the couple separate. These Cohabitation Agreements are sometimes called Marvin Agreements after the landmark California Supreme Court decision in Marvin v. Marvin.
Divorce Helpline has worked with a number of couples to draft Cohabitation Agreements in a supportive environment that acknowledges and respects the rights and concerns of each partner. In many instances, these are individuals whose business or creative endeavors involve intellectual property or creative works whose value may change dramatically over time. Our intention is to create a legally-binding written agreement that can help clarify potentially divisive issues before they arise and give couples control of the outcome of their relationship as it pertains to property and assets, should they separate. Much like a prenuptial agreement, a Cohabitation Agreement can give partners some peace of mind and confidence that their intentions have been clearly outlined and agreed to.