Postnuptial agreements are contracts that spouses sign after they have already started married life. Each state has its own rules about postnuptial agreements. In Florida, these agreements are similar to prenuptial agreements because they are family law contracts between spouses that make provisions for asset division and alimony (spousal support) in case the marriage ends, whether by death or divorce. The main difference is the timing. It is important to retain an experienced West Palm Beach postnuptial agreement lawyer to make sure that an agreement that you reach is enforceable. The Law Offices of Stephen J. Press is ready to help you craft a valid agreement or contest an agreement that may be invalid.Reasons to Enter a Postnuptial Agreement
Postnuptial agreements are not agreements made to promote a divorce. Instead, after marrying, a couple may become aware of certain issues that they did not know when going into the marriage, or they may realize that they want more control over their financial future. Postnuptial agreements can address rights and obligations not only after a divorce but also in case of legal separation or death.
Florida spouses can enter into a postnuptial agreement that involves the disposition of their property. The agreement may include provisions about how a certain asset may be sold, bought, utilized, leased, or transferred. It can also include agreements about how assets will be distributed in the event of specific life changes like death or divorce.
Additionally, a postnuptial agreement may include provisions agreeing to alimony, the distribution of death benefits from a life insurance policy, and the way in which certain estate planning instruments, such as a trust, will be drafted. Our postnuptial agreement attorneys can help West Palm Beach residents integrate provisions that meet their needs.Validity of Postnuptial Agreements
A postnuptial agreement must be in writing and signed by both spouses, and it must include terms and provisions that Florida laws permit. Postnuptial agreements should only be made after a truthful and accurate disclosure of each spouse's financial situation. Additionally, to be enforceable contracts, postnuptial agreements must include valid consideration. Consideration needs to be something of value that a party gives up or receives as part of the agreement. Mutual promises can constitute valid consideration. However, the marriage itself is not consideration for a postnuptial agreement, since by definition, the marriage occurred before the postnuptial agreement was crafted.Enforceability of a Postnuptial Agreement
A postnuptial agreement will not be enforceable if it is produced through coercion, duress, or overreaching. A West Palm Beach postnuptial agreement attorney can help you get this type of agreement modified or even set aside by showing one of these conditions. An agreement may also be set aside if one spouse shows that they signed it due to a misrepresentation, deceit, or fraud by the other spouse. The court may be more suspicious in circumstances in which the agreement was crafted without a proper and full asset disclosure, or in which a licensed attorney did not give advice and counsel on the postnuptial agreement. However, if the spouse who claims to have been treated unfairly was given a proper, full disclosure, the court will likely allow the agreement to stand. Simply making a bad bargain with regard to a postnuptial agreement would not alone be a strong enough basis for a postnuptial agreement to be set aside.Contact an Experienced Family Law Attorney to Explore Your Options
Almost half of first marriages end in divorce. Sometimes one or both spouses only realize what they want their financial future to look like after they marry. It is possible to enter into a postnuptial agreement when the spouses are not contemplating a divorce at the time. We are experienced and aggressive trial lawyers who can represent you in matters regarding postnuptial agreements and other aspects of a divorce in South Florida. Our firm assists people throughout Broward, Palm Beach, and Martin Counties, including in Boca Raton, Boynton Beach, Delray Beach, Jupiter, Royal Palm Beach, Wellington, Fort Lauderdale, Pembroke Pines, Davie, Coral Springs, Hollywood, Hallandale Beach, Pompano Beach, Plantation, Stuart, Hobe Sound, Indiantown, Palm City, and Jensen Beach. Call the Law Offices of Stephen J. Press at (888) 808-2772 or complete our online form to set up an appointment with a postnuptial agreement lawyer in West Palm Beach.