Prenuptial agreements (also known as “premarital agreements”) are available for those who are planning for marriage and postnuptial agreements are available for those who are currently married. Although prenuptial and postnuptial agreements don’t have the best “reputation”, the reality is that, in Florida, the Court can decide how marital assets and debts are allocated upon divorce or death. A valid prenuptial or postnuptial agreement allows the couple, as opposed to the court, to determine how those assets and debts are distributed.
Frequently Asked Questions Regarding Prenuptial and Postnuptial Agreements
Q: Is a prenuptial agreement valid if I never marry the intended spouse?
A: No. In Florida, the agreement is only enforceable if the parties marry. There is no need to distribute assets if there is no marital property. But note, that the agreement is only enforceable if the marriage is valid. In Florida, a marriage may be void if, for example, one spouse was legally married to a third party at the time of the marriage.
Q: Can I include a provision in my prenuptial or postnuptial agreement that limits the amount of child support?
A: No. In Florida, a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement cannot be used to limit the amount of child support.
Q: Can I include a provision that designates which spouse who receive the family pet(s)?
A: Yes. In Florida, pets are typically treated as personal property. Distribution of personal and real property is permissible in premarital or postnuptial agreement.
Q: How can I challenge a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement?
A: Yes. In Florida, there are a number of reasons why a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement could be held invalid. For example, if you are coerced into signing an agreement with noticeably unfair terms without the opportunity to consult an attorney, a court may find the agreement unenforceable. However, the courts will not protect a spouse from entering into a “bad deal.” For an example, if you enter into an agreement allocating $300 in alimony because it was based on your spouse’s income at the time of the marriage, but his or her income later significantly increased before the divorce, a court will likely find the agreement enforceable. Thus, it is important to consult an attorney to discuss further.
Mosaic Law Firm is conveniently located in Downtown Orlando, Florida and Downtown Washington, D.C. Contact us now to inquire further and learn how our firm can help you with your family law issues.