Prenuptial Agreement Lawyers in Ventura, California
A growing number of people are deciding to enter into prenuptial agreements, which are made before marriage. While these agreements were once viewed as a thing that was only used by the wealthiest people, today prenuptial agreements play a role in a much wider range of marriages.
Divorce can be a complex process. After all, divorces involve splitting up assets as well as other aspects of two married individuals’ lives. Provided a couple had children during a marriage, the matter of splitting up lives can become even more nuanced. By entering into a prenuptial agreement, a person establishes a strategy for how this division will occur if their marriage ends.
Affording California Prenuptial Agreements
At Land Legal Group, we provide a range of clients with prenuptial agreements.
For prenuptial agreements to be classified as legally valid in California, both spouses must consent to the documents. Our attorneys charge a fixed rate to create prenuptial agreements for clients. If necessary, our lawyers are also prepared to review and approve prenuptial agreements that have been drafted by another lawyer.
Appreciating the Terms of California Prenuptial Agreements
Prenuptial agreements refer to contracts that are signed by future spouses before entering into marriage. Prenuptial agreements address how marital debts, as well as assets, are divided in case the couple some day divorces.
Prenuptial agreements often list the assets as well as debts that each partner carries into a marriage. When spouses establish prenuptial agreements, they have a great deal of freedom in the agreement’s terms, with some exceptions.
Child custody and support issues are some of the most contentious issues in divorce. You unfortunately will be prohibited from including clauses that tackle child custody or child support unless a provision involves providing an amount of child support greater than what is court required.
Prenuptial Agreements and California Law
California law addresses the requirements under the law for valid prenuptial agreements. These requirements include:
- Both parties who enter into the agreement must have the mental competence to consent to the document’s terms
- When prenuptial agreements are the product of fraud, courts can later rule that agreements are invalid
- If one spouse does not speak English as a native language, the agreement must be translated to this person’s native language
- Each individual should retain their own attorney. While it’s possible to waive the right to legal counsel, participants can only do this if they appreciate the repercussions of foregoing counsel.
- All contract law fundamentals apply to prenuptial agreements. Resultantly, if an agreement does not constitute a valid contract, it is not enforceable.
- A prenuptial agreement cannot contain “unconscionable” terms. This means that one party should not unreasonably have more power in the contract than the other spouse.
- California Family Code Section 1615(c) requires seven days to elapse between when one party receives the official version of the agreement and is advised to obtain a lawyer before signing the agreement. You should also make sure to begin writing a prenuptial agreement long before getting married.
Prenuptial Agreements and California Community Property Laws
The state of California follows community property laws. This means that when couples do not have a prenuptial agreement, both individuals retain any pre-marital assets they owned after a divorce. This is referred to as separate property. Additionally, any property shared by spouses during the marriage becomes equally partitioned between former spouses. Prenuptial agreements let couples pick their own rules and select how they divide property in case they later divorce.
Couples can stipulate that one spouse holds onto real estate owned by the couple, while the other spouse holds onto the assets held in the couple’s retirement account. In most cases, courts divide assets among spouses.
The Advantages of Entering into Prenuptial Agreements in California
One advantageous aspect of entering into prenuptial agreements is the amount of protection that it provides for the assets you own. If one spouse has substantial separate personal property by the time you get married, it’s understandable to want to make sure that the spouse holds onto this asset if the marriage does not last.
It’s also possible to insert provisions in the agreement that address which assets each individual will receive. This can prove advantageous in avoiding substantial costs as well as a contentious divorce later on.
Prenuptial agreements allow parties who enter into these agreements to designate what debt is owed by each spouse. If one partner has a large amount of debt, a prenuptial agreement can help you from assuming these debts as a financial liability in case you one day separate.
Prenuptial agreements also provide the advantage of reducing stress. Although it might seem challenging to discuss the fact that your marriage might not last during an engagement, waiting to deal with these issues later will only make the situation more difficult. Rather than worry about your finances following the end of your marriage, you can relax with the knowledge that a detailed plan exists involving how your assets will be handled. Prenuptial agreements can also help former couples stay away from litigation in court associated with the divorce and make concluding the marriage less emotionally taxing and less costly.
Additionally, when two people who marry come from different economic backgrounds, prenuptial agreements let one spouse retain assets acquired before the marriage. In many situations, if one person contributes to a family business, the spouse might decide to protect her share of the business through the use of a prenuptial agreement.
At Land Legal Group, our family law firm in Ventura, CA also focuses on the following practice areas:
- Same-Sex Divorce
- Child Custody
- Grandparents Rights
- Fathers Rights
- Domestic Violence
- Spousal Support
- Children’s Law
- Child Support
- Dependency Law
Contact Our Ventura Prenuptial Agreement Lawyer Today to Fortify Your Financial Integrity
When faced with a major life decision, it’s a good idea to obtain reliable legal advice. Marriage is a major event, and deciding to create a prenuptial agreement should be given a great deal of thought. It’s also critical to understand all elements of an agreement, specifically regarding what rights and obligations are waived by an agreement in case a divorce or death happens.
Given the weight of these decisions, it’s a good idea for each party involved in prenuptial agreement meetings to be represented by their own legal counsel. At Land Legal Group, we focus on providing engaged legal representation to our clients. Contact our Ventura family law attorneys today to schedule a case evaluation at (805) 696-2160.