California courts will generally uphold the terms of a valid prenuptial agreement. Furthermore, the courts will typically uphold valid contracts that are executed after a wedding takes place. However, there are many issues to consider before deciding if you want to create a custom marriage agreement with your spouse.
A prenuptial agreement can be used to stipulate that a business, home or other property remains in your possession if your marriage ends. Furthermore, it can be used to determine if you’re entitled to alimony payments in the event of a divorce. Finally, you can think of this type of deal as akin to negotiating the terms of a divorce before it happens. This can save a significant amount of time and money if the relationship fails.
One of the primary drawbacks of a prenuptial agreement is that it may create a level of mistrust between partners. This may be particularly true if one person has a significant amount of assets while the other has little more than debt. It’s also important to note that such an agreement may be thrown out in court if there is reason to believe that it wasn’t structured in accordance with state law.
Postnuptial agreements are, essentially, prenuptial agreements that didn’t become official until after you married your spouse. It isn’t uncommon for couples who are having marriage issues to execute these types of documents in an effort to preserve their relationships. Regardless of why you’re seeking a custom marriage contract, it’s generally in your best interest to have an attorney review a deal before it goes into effect.
A lawyer may provide more insight into the potential benefits of signing a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement. If you already have such an agreement with your partner, legal counsel may be able to review its terms to determine if they will likely be upheld in court.