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To Each Their Own: Premarital And Postmarital Agreements

Prenuptial agreements do not carry the stigma they once did. It’s not a prediction that the marriage is doomed. It’s a prudent and practical measure, similar to insurance. However, as with any insurance policy, you need to pay attention to the fine print.

Our experienced lawyers at Anderson, Leech & Long can draft your premarital or postmarital agreement, or they can review a prenup that your fiancé or fiancée has asked you to sign.

What Is The Purpose Of Prenuptial Agreements?

A prenuptial agreement, also known as a premarital agreement, is a contract. In the event of a divorce at any point in the future, the prenup would supersede the presumption of equitable distribution of property under Pennsylvania law. Typically, each spouse will retain what they brought to the marriage instead of dividing property 50-50. It can also stipulate other considerations, such as alimony payments or a waiver of alimony.

The prenuptial agreement has become more common for the following reasons and more:

  • It protects the spouse who owned a house or business prior to marriage.
  • It protects the inheritance rights of children from a previous marriage.
  • It streamlines and reduces the costs of divorce proceedings if the marriage ends

NOTE: Prenups may not dictate any aspect of child custody or child support. The court retains the authority to protect the best interests of the child.

What Is A Postmarital Agreement?

A postmarital agreement serves the same purpose, but it is entered after the couple is married. One spouse may wish to set aside a family inheritance or proceeds of a lawsuit or protect a business that they have built during the marriage.

Our Attorneys Protect Your Interests In Marital Agreements

A prenup or postnup must meet certain criteria to be upheld by a court. It can’t be patently unfair or contain preposterous provisions. It can be nullified if it was signed under duress, as when it’s presented as an ultimatum on the eve of the wedding. It must fully disclose all assets that each party owns. Both parties must have reasonable time to review and seek legal counsel before entering the contract.

Our learned attorneys write, review and litigate marital agreements. They have represented the monied spouses who want to insulate the assets they accumulated before marriage. They have represented the lesser-earning spouses who do not want to be taken advantage of. Sometimes, the agreement requires additional clarification or renegotiated terms.

To explore a customized premarital agreement or to get a second opinion on a pending prenup, please call our Pittsburgh law office at 412-347-4309 or contact us online and schedule a consultation.