Category Archives: Postnuptial Agreements

When to Consider a Postnuptial Agreement

Wheaton postnup agreement lawyerMarriage is more than love and romance. The union is comprised of many facets, not the least of which is the financial component. One must remember that above all, marriage is a legal contract, and unless an agreement exists stating otherwise, “What is mine is yours” is the general rule that will be followed. Under Illinois law, any property or debt acquired during a marriage is considered marital property, meaning both parties have an equal claim to these assets in the case of divorce. Although this may seem trivial when everything is sunshine and rainbows during a marriage, it can be extremely detrimental should the union fail. To address these issues, a postnuptial agreement can protect your interests if your relationship encounters difficulty.

A Logical Look to the Future

A prenuptial agreement can document what should happen to assets and debts should the marriage result in divorce. Although the thought of the marriage failing before it even begins can be unromantic, logically, this is an ideal time for the discussion, especially given that approximately 50% of marriages result in divorce. When preparing to get married, you can civilly discuss the intimate details without the hostility associated with separation.

After “I Do,” It Is Not Too Late

For many Americans, a prenuptial agreement is either out of the question or regarded as unnecessary. However, as a marriage progresses, circumstances change that alter the family dynamic. In these cases, it is not too late to create a legal agreement to protect yourself. A postnuptial agreement is fundamentally identical to a prenup, except that it is created after the marriage vows. The contract can include any provisions the couple deems necessary, such as how assets will be divided or whether one spouse will pay spousal maintenance. Some spouses even choose to incorporate a clause regarding what should happen in the event of adultery, something the state does not include in divorce decisions.

When Is a Postnuptial Agreement Appropriate?

The decision to create a postnuptial agreement does not always come when either or both spouses are considering divorce, although this can happen. Typically, the marriage is in great shape, but something has changed that requires legal clarification. For instance, one spouse may quit their job to stay home and raise the children. It may be a good idea to create legal documentation to ensure that the other spouse cannot later claim that they were against this decision.

Other circumstances in which a postnuptial agreement can be helpful include:

  • One spouse comes into a large inheritance.
  • A family-owned business grew and expanded over the course of the marriage.
  • A spouse was unfaithful, and the other spouse wants to ensure future faithfulness.

A Wheaton Family Law Attorney Can Help

If you think you may need a postnuptial agreement, it is essential to ask an experienced DuPage County postnuptial agreement lawyer for assistance. The laws surrounding divorce and other family issues fluctuate continuously, and it is important to ensure that these issues are properly addressed in a marital agreement. At Andrew Cores Family Law Group, we can advise you on how to create an agreement that meets your needs and protects your rights. Call our office today at 630-871-1002 to schedule a free initial consultation.


Reasons That Your Prenuptial Agreement Might Not Be Enforceable

prenuptial agreement, Wheaton family lawyers Prenuptial agreements, also called premarital agreements or “prenups,” are beneficial legal tools couples can use to manage and protect assets. Although they are often associated with celebrity marriages, prenups are not only for the rich and famous. Anyone can benefit from the protections offered through this valuable legal tool, but those who choose to create a prenup must be sure to do it correctly. It is not uncommon for a couple to think that they have a legally-binding prenuptial agreement only to discover it is unenforceable during a divorce. There are several circumstances which can invalidate a prenuptial agreement.

Prenups Must Meet Certain Criteria to Be Legally-Binding

You may remember the outrageous comedy movie Liar Liar. In the film, Jim Carrey’s character is a divorce attorney helping a less-than-ethical client divorce her husband. Although the movie is filled with exaggerations and inaccuracies, the clip in which the client’s prenuptial agreement is found to be invalid in court is fairly realistic. The client had entered into a prenuptial agreement with her husband upon getting married, but it was discovered that she was only seventeen-years-old when she signed it. Minors cannot enter into legally-enforceable contracts such as a prenuptial agreement. So, if one or both of the individuals were under age 18 upon signing the prenuptial agreement, it will not be valid.

Both Parties Must Fully Understand and Consent to the Prenuptial Agreement

Another way a prenup can be invalidated is if it was signed under duress. If one of the spouses was coerced into signing the document against his or her will, it cannot be used to make decisions about property during a divorce. Similarly, if a spouse was not mentally coherent when signing the document due to drugs, alcohol, illness, or for any other reason, it will not be legally-enforceable. A prenup can also be invalidated if both parties did not fully read and comprehend the document. If the prenuptial agreement contains lies regarding income or debts, it can also be thrown out.

A Prenuptial Agreement Must Be Reasonable

A prenup will not be enforceable if it contains “unconscionable provisions.” Unconscionable provisions refers to rule or directions which are grossly unfair or unethical. For example, a prenup which gives all the marital assets to one spouse while assigning all the marital debt to another will probably not hold up in court.

Contact a Qualified Wheaton Lawyer for Help Drafting Your Prenuptial Agreement

The only way to be completely certain that your prenuptial agreement is legally-binding is to have it reviewed by a licensed attorney. For help drafting or modifying a prenup, contact our team of highly skilled DuPage County family law attorneys at the Andrew Cores Family Law Group. Call us at 630-871-1002 today.



The Importance of Financial Disclosures to Prenuptial and Postnuptial Agreements

Illinois divorce attorney, Illinois family lawyer, Illinois child custody lawyer,As unromantic as it may sound, a marriage can be compared to a contract, with two people coming together and agreeing to form a partnership under certain terms. In some cases, when couples are contemplating marriage and even after they are married, they may enter into additional agreements to ensure their financial interests are secure in the event of a divorce. There are many reasons why couples may choose to enter into these prenuptial and postnuptial agreements, and there are numerous other concerns that they have to keep in mind when executing them. One important aspect of both kinds of agreements is the legal need for all parties to be aware of the assets at stake.

Financial disclosures are a key requirement in determining the enforceability of a prenuptial agreement. One of the elements a court looks at in determining that the contract is enforceable is if the party challenging the agreement was provided with a fair and reasonable disclosure of the other party’s assets or financial obligations. While there may later be a disagreement as to what constitutes a fair and reasonable disclosure, it is safe to say a complete disclosure of all assets owned, even partial interests, and all debt owed would satisfy this requirement. Often, the financial disclosure submitted by each party is attached to the prenuptial agreement as an exhibit or addendum to avoid questions of what was and what was not disclosed later on.

With postnuptial agreements, financial disclosure can be just as important. A couple that agrees to sign away rights to property or other assets after they are already married should not assume that they know what they own individually or jointly. If one person suggests a postnuptial agreement, each party should seek a complete financial disclosure of all assets, even those that may be considered premarital property. Having an accurate picture of all the assets and debts at play can affect the negotiations that take place. In agreeing to distribute property a certain way after the marriage, parties should also remember that a court would still look to see if the agreement was unconscionable. If either party fraudulently misrepresents their financial assets, shields marital assets, or misrepresents their intentions in order to get the other to agree to an unequal financial distribution, a court is likely to find the agreement unconscionable.

In signing either agreement, both parties need to consult with an attorney and any financial advisors necessary to make a knowledgeable and voluntary decision.

Contact an Experienced Family Law Attorney

If you are considering entering into a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement and would like to find out how either agreement may affect your rights, contact our dedicated DuPage County family law attorneys to learn how we can be of assistance in your case.