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Prenuptial AGREEMENTS

The Texas Family Code defines a prenuptial agreement as "an agreement between prospective spouses made in contemplation of marriage and to be effective on marriage." Tex. Fam. Code Sec. 4.001. Generally, parties entering into marriage with large sums of money or substantial assets choose to have a prenuptial agreement in lieu of a court-division of property if/when the marriage ends. "The parties to a premarital agreement may contract with respect to:
  1. the rights and obligations of each of the parties in any of the property of either or both of them whenever and wherever acquired or located;
  2. the right to buy, sell, use, transfer, exchange, abandon, lease, consume, expend, assign, create a security interest in, mortgage, encumber, dispose of, or otherwise manage and control property;
  3. the disposition of property on separation, marital dissolution, death, or the occurrence or nonoccurrence of any other event;
  4. the modification or elimination of spousal support;
  5. the making of a will, trust, or other arrangement to carry out the provisions of the agreement;
  6. the ownership rights in and disposition of the death benefit from a life insurance policy;
  7. the choice of law governing the construction of the agreement; and
  8. any other matter, including their personal rights and obligations, not in violation of public policy or a statute imposing a criminal penalty." Tex. Fam. Code Sec. 4.003.
Note the Family Code specifically addresses child support, stating that it may not be adversely affected by a premarital agreement. See Tex. Fam. Code Sec. 4.003(b).

"A premarital agreement is not enforceable if the party against whom enforcement is requested proves that:
  1. the party did not sign the agreement voluntarily; or
  2. the agreement was unconscionable when it was signed and, before signing the agreement, that party:
    1. was not provided a fair and reasonable disclosure of the property or financial obligations of the other party;
    2. did not voluntarily and expressly waive, in writing, any right to disclosure of the property or financial obligations of the other party beyond the disclosure provided; and
    3. did not have, or reasonably could not have had, adequate knowledge of the property or financial obligations of the other party." Tex. Fam. Code Sec. 4.006
If you would like to explore the option of having a prenuptial agreement before marriage or if you are questioning the validity of a prenuptial agreement, contact our office today for an initial consultation.

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