Feel More Secure in Your Marriage with a Postnuptial Agreement
A postnuptial agreement is a document that you and your spouse create after marriage to determine how your assets will be divided in the event of a separation or divorce. Similar to a prenuptial agreement, a “postnup” can establish financial security for both parties and prevent a contentious divorce. Some couples find that entering into a prenuptial agreement helps preserve the stability of their marriage. With two board-certified attorneys on staff, Saunders Law Group in Bartow, FL, can help you develop a secure and beneficial postmarital agreement. Thomas C. Saunders and K.C. Bouchillon are both family law attorneys who can assist you with drawing up your agreement and ensuring it is official and binding.
Understanding Postnuptial Agreements
A postnup is a document intended to settle you and your spouse’s affairs and assets in the case of a separation or divorce. Without a prenup or a postnup, all assets acquired during your marriage are subject to Florida’s laws for distributing marital property. In the event of a divorce, the court can distribute your marital property as they see fit. If you are already married and do not have a prenup, a postnuptial agreement is a way to protect your best interests in the event of a divorce.
How to Create a Postnuptial Agreement
Postnups are a relatively new development in family law and as such, require careful drafting to ensure the court does not nullify them. The first necessity is full and fair disclosure. You must openly discuss everything surrounding your finances and any other subjects covered by your postnup. In addition, both you and your spouse must have independent legal counsel.
These two requirements are intended to protect both spouses in the event of a divorce. In general, courts place more scrutiny on postmarital agreements than prenuptial agreements. The theory is that couples have less bargaining power once they are married and there is a higher chance that one party will be treated unfairly.
What Goes into a Postnup?
The exact nature of your postnuptial agreement will depend on what you and your spouse want to achieve. In most cases, a postnup will discuss:
- All assets and debts of your relationship
- Any anticipated or past debts that could potentially affect you both
- Your family’s current spending habits
- Expected division of property in the event of a divorce
- Expected division of property in the case of death
In cases where one spouse earns significantly more than the other, you can also include provisions for spousal support, or alimony. For many couples with disparate earning capacity, an alimony clause can reduce conflict and create a sense of certainty.
Why Hire an Attorney
Before signing any documents associated with a postnup, both you and your spouse should have the document reviewed by an independent family law attorney. Each lawyer should sign a Certificate of Independent Legal Counsel to include with the postnup.
The board-certified attorneys at Saunders Law Group can help you at any stage of developing your postmarital agreement. We handle many cases of collaborative divorce and are accustomed to helping couples effectively discuss their relationships. We can also review a postnup drafted by another firm to ensure your best interests are protected.
Hire an Advocate
We understand that discussing the possibility of divorce can be stressful. However, a postnuptial agreement can protect you and your family from an emotional, contested divorce in the future. Our team can help you develop a secure postnup in a relaxed, but professional, atmosphere. For more information about our family law services, contact our office online or call (863) 533-6200 today to speak to a member of our team.
You can trust your family, business, or personal injury case to our compassionate but objective attorneys.Saunders Law Group