A prenuptial agreement is a legally binding written contract created before a couple marries, and becomes effective after, to address financial issues and property rights. Under the California Family Law Code a prenuptial agreement must be in writing. Oral agreements brought up in the court, legally, will not stand in the event of a divorce, so writing out your prenup is a must. Although it does not sound the most ideal romantically, it sets financial expectations and responsibilities for each spouse. This is especially necessary if you are considering starting a business prior or during marriage to avoid having the assets being split 50/50 in the event of separation or divorce.
Every state has its own family code on prenuptial agreements and what can and cant be included in them. For California the California’s Uniform Premarital Agreement Act governs the agreements. The act states what can and cannot be included in the agreement. It does protect each spouse’s rights and obligations towards property, whether it be community property or marital residence, the prenup states how the spouse will divide the property in the event of a divorce. It also covers financial responsibilities and debt. A prenuptial agreement can also include a clause, which states that the agreement is only valid for a certain amount of years.
A prenuptial agreement cannot include or deal with the following: child custody, visitation of children, child support, how to raise children, or anything illegal or unconscionable. California has special provisions when it comes to prenups, for example provisions regarding spousal support will not be enforced. This is because it is impossible to determine earlier on whether a spousal support provision will be enforceable when, or if you separate. This is because your financial circumstances can change at any time. These provisions could be made clear by your family divorce lawyer.
If you are considering divorce and have a prenuptial agreement, contact Thorsteinson Law Group, your trusted and experienced Long Beach and Huntington Beach divorce attorney.