Orange County Post Nuptial Agreement Lawyer
A postnuptial agreement is a written contract signed by both partners after a couple gets married to settle the couple’s affairs and assets in the event their relationship ends in a legal separation or a divorce. In every important way, a after marriage agreement accomplishes precisely the same things that a prenuptial accord accomplishes. Although a postnuptial agreement is not required, it resolves a number of issues in advance, including any potential future disputes over children, finances, assets, inheritances, or other potentially acrimonious matters that can surface between partners if the marriage is dissolved.
The only real difference between a “prenup” and a “postnup” is that an postnuptial agreement settlement is created during the course of the marriage rather than prior to the marriage ceremony. Besides this difference, prenuptial and postnuptial agreements are basically the same and are both subject to enforcement by the courts. In southern California, an experienced Orange County postnuptial agreement lawyer at the Bayati Law Group can help married couples create and formalize a valid and acceptable after marriage settlement and can also make sure that both spouses understand the accord’s terms and full implications.
THE BAYATI LAW GROUP CAN HELP
A postnuptial agreement attorney at the Bayati Law Group can also review current postnuptial and prenuptial agreements to ensure that they are valid, fair, and adequate agreements that will work for both partners. Remember, modifications can always be made to postnuptial agreements at the request of the couple, as long as both parties agree to it. New terms can be added or existing terms can be changed or removed completely. In southern California, if you need a postnuptial agreement drafted or reviewed, if you are planning on making a modification to your agreement, or if you have questions or concerns about any after marriage agreement or any other matter of family law, contact the Bayati Law Group promptly. We can help.
A divorce is never part of the plan, but for whatever reason, it’s a reality for many people so it’s best to be prepared. According to a survey conducted by the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers in 2015, postnuptial agreements are growing in popularity in almost every state. Of course, many couples today sign a prenuptial agreement long before they exchange marriage vows. But if you do not have a prenuptial accord, one spouse’s bad behavior or out of control spending during the marriage might prompt the other spouse to ask for a after marriage agreement. Even when a marriage is going well, a couple may take advantage of a postnuptial accord to define their circumstances and understandings more clearly by designating each spouse’s separate property, financial responsibilities, or rights to the family business.
A “postnup” – in the state of California, the legal term is a “postmarital agreement” – is only valid in this state if both of the partners voluntarily agree to it after a full disclosure of all of their debts and assets. Spouses must also have their own independent legal counsel or the opportunity to consult with independent legal counsel prior to signing an after marriage settlement. An experienced Orange County postnuptial agreement lawyer at the Bayati Law Group is available for those consultations. We know how to help you and your spouse draft a postnuptial agreement that’s fair and that protects and benefits both of you.
YOU MUST HAVE INDEPENDENT LEGAL COUNSEL
If your spouse’s attorney has prepared a postnuptial agreement for your signature, review the accord with a Bayati Law Group attorney. Your spouse’s lawyer cannot advise you – that’s a conflict of interest. A Bayati Law Group attorney can review the accord and tell you if it’s appropriate and fair. Before signing, read the agreement carefully. You can’t get out of a postnuptial by claiming that you didn’t read it.
Postnuptial agreements only came to be accepted in the United States in the second half of the twentieth century. Prior to that era, marriage laws in most states presumed that legal contracts such as postnuptial agreements could not be valid between two spouses. The inability of a husband and wife to contract with one another was due to the older legal concept of “marital unity,” which meant that at the time of marriage, a husband and wife became a single legal entity or person.
Since a person may not enter into a legal contract with one’s self, a postnuptial agreement would have no validity in a legal system that presumes marital unity. But even after the courts in the United States eventually rejected marital unity as a legal principle, postnuptial agreements were still thought by many to encourage divorce. It was only in the 1970s that postnuptial agreements were finally legally recognized in most states. Under California law today, this state’s divorce courts will honor formal postnuptial agreements, although the state does place some restrictions on these agreements.
WHAT DOES THE LAW SAY?
The California Family Code states that, “The property rights of husband and wife prescribed by statute may be altered by a premarital agreement or other marital property agreement.” California divorce courts will not enforce postnuptial agreements that attempt in advance to limit or restrict child support in any way. A child’s right to be supported by both parents is considered an absolute and fundamental principle in California family law.
Not every postnuptial agreement is necessarily in every spouse’s best interests. For example, a lower-earning spouse may receive less property and alimony in a postnuptial agreement than if the case went to trial. A wealthier spouse who wants to try avoid dividing the family business may attempt to use a postnuptial agreement to protect income and assets. If a postnuptial agreement gives one spouse less in a divorce than that spouse would have received without the agreement, that partner may ask a court to set the postnuptial agreement aside.
When a divorcing partner asks for a postnuptial agreement to be set aside, a judge will determine whether that agreement is unfair compared against what the court would do without the agreement in place. When there is a substantial difference between what the court would do with and without the existence of the postnuptial agreement, then a California judge may determine that the postnuptial agreement is not fair and is therefore invalid and cannot be enforced. This process can be confusing and challenging, so you will need the help of an attorney who has family law litigation experience.
DON’T DELAY – PROMPTLY SCHEDULE A CONSULTATION
You can schedule an appointment right now to consult with an experienced Orange County postnuptial agreement lawyer at the Bayati Law Group regarding an after marriage settlement or any other matter of family law. Please call (949) 798-5700 or please enter your information on the contact page form on this site, which also includes a map with our office location and driving directions. It is our policy to treat every Bayati Law Group client and prospective client with complete respect and extend every possible professional courtesy. Every client phone call and email is returned promptly by an individual in our office.
Nothing is more important than your future. If you are already married in southern California, you should nevertheless schedule a consultation as soon possible with an experienced Orange County family law attorney to learn more about the advantages and benefits of postnuptial agreements. The Bayati Law Group attorneys have experience representing clients in all matters pertaining to family law, including spousal support, property division, and more, in Orange County and throughout southern California.