Certified Family Law Specialist, State Bar of California, and Board of Legal Specialization

Marriage is a huge milestone, and most couples look forward to a long and happy life together. Unfortunately, life does not always go as planned, and divorce can result in severe financial consequences for you and your spouse without adequate planning.

Whether you are preparing for marriage or are already married, our family law attorneys could help you protect your future from divorce by explaining the advantages of marital settlement agreements. A capable Simi Valley marital agreements lawyer is well-versed in the laws governing spousal contracts and could help ensure your interests are protected.

Entering an Agreement before Marriage

Pre-marital agreements, or prenups, are contracts signed by a couple before they marry. The state’s Uniform Pre-marital Agreement Act imposes certain requirements on legally enforceable pre-marital contracts, and California Family Code §1612 indicates what issues the parties can address therein, including:

  • The right to buy, sell, lease, mortgage, or otherwise manage individual or shared property
  • Property disposition upon separation, divorce, death, or another specified event
  • The making of a will or trust to carry out a prenuptial agreement’s provisions
  • Ownership and disposition of life insurance benefits
  • Any other matter the parties wish to address that does not violate public policy or state law

As part of the spousal agreement process, both parties must fully disclose their financial status to the other. Additionally, each party should have an experienced lawyer to represent them during the marital contract negotiations.

Contract Options for Married Couples

Unlike prenups, post-marital agreements are executed after the marriage. A couple may consider a postnuptial contract (postnup) if they anticipate a significant change in their relationship or finances. For example, if one spouse wants to invest in property using money they earned before marriage, a post-marital contract may be an excellent way to protect sole ownership over those funds in the event of divorce.

Postnups can also be beneficial if one spouse’s behavior threatens the couple’s finances. For instance, a post-marital contract could protect a financially responsible spouse from being responsible for the debt their partner incurs due to lavish spending against their wishes.

A knowledgeable attorney in Simi Valley could further explain marital contracts for married couples and how they can help achieve a desired outcome.

Marital Settlement Agreements in Simi Valley Divorce Cases

Under state law, assets acquired during a marriage are generally considered community property. If a couple divorces, each spouse is typically entitled to receive one-half the community assets and debts, regardless of who contributed the majority of either.

Divorcing couples who wish to bypass the community property laws and determine their own asset division may do so in a carefully drafted marital settlement agreement with the assistance of a local lawyer. In other words, a marital contract allows estranged spouses to organize and divide assets on their own terms. As long as the agreement is legally valid and not signed under duress, the court must approve the couple’s desired property settlement.

Retain a Marital Agreements Attorney in Simi Valley to Protect Your Financial Interests

More couples than ever are recognizing the benefits of marital agreements in securing their financial future in the event of divorce or separation. Whether you are considering marriage or have already married, a skilled Simi Valley marital agreements lawyer could help you create an effective, enforceable contract that meets both parties’ needs and goals. Reach out to one of our legal team’s caring attorneys today to learn more about the advantages of a well-crafted spousal contract.

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Hoffer Family Law Firm

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