Joel W. Anders, P.C.
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Should you create a postnuptial agreement?

If you missed the opportunity to create a prenuptial agreement, you're not out of luck. Instead, you should consider the finer details of creating a postnuptial agreement.

As the name suggests, a postnuptial agreement is one that you create after you tie the knot. This gives you the opportunity to work at your own pace, as you don't have the deadline of your wedding day staring you in the face.

Just the same as a prenuptial agreement, discussing the creation of a postnuptial agreement can be a challenge. Here are some tips to help ensure a smooth and meaningful discussion:

  • Talk about the pros and cons of a postnuptial agreement
  • Talk about what to include and not to include in the agreement
  • Don't force your partner into creating a postnuptial agreement
  • Exercise patience as you work through the process

If you're inching closer toward discussing a postnuptial agreement, it's time to turn your attention to what you want to include. Here are some ideas:

  • Separate property that you brought into the marriage
  • Protection against debt that your spouse brought into the marriage
  • Inheritance rights of a child or children from a previous relationship
  • Protection if you no longer work because you stay home to care for your children

Is your postnuptial agreement valid?

Creating a postnuptial agreement is not as simple as it sounds, as there are many mistakes that can invalidate it. These include but are not limited to:

  • Opting for an oral agreement, as opposed to putting it in writing
  • One individual pressured the other into signing it
  • One individual didn't have the opportunity to review the agreement
  • Invalid provisions
  • Incomplete or inaccurate information
  • Unfair to one party

The last thing you want to do is create a postnuptial agreement with good intentions, just to find out later that it's invalid.

If the time has come to discuss a postnuptial agreement with your spouse, sit down and have a meaningful conversation. Maybe you decide that now is the best time to proceed. Or maybe you decide to continue discussing the finer details for the time being.

Regardless of your situation, don't ignore your legal rights when creating a postnuptial agreement. The decisions you make now could have a profound effect on your personal life and finances in the event of divorce.

Visit our website for more information on postnuptial agreements and other family law matters in Washington, D.C.

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