Barnholtz & Kugler Articles Premarital Agreements in California

Premarital Agreements in California

By Barnholtz & Kugler  May. 21, 2013 10:46a

In California, premarital agreements are governed by Family Code Section 1610 through 1617 and must be written and formalized accordingly. A premarital agreement is defined as “an agreement between prospective spouses made in contemplation of marriage and to be effective upon marriage.” The agreement lays out how property, assets, and financial matters such as spousal support and maintenance will be handled should the marriage end in divorce or the death of one of the parties. In order to be valid, the agreement is in writing and signed by both parties. Each party should have their own independent legal counsel advising them on the matter, to ensure that the agreement will stand up in court at a later date.

The Family Code lists seven areas that may be worked out in the contract of a premarital agreement. These areas include:

1. The rights and obligations of each party pertaining to any property;

2. The right to buy, sell, use, transfer, exchange, abandon, lease, consume, expend, assign, create a security interest in, mortgage, encumber, dispose of, or manage or control property;

3. How property will be disposed upon separation, divorce, death, or the occurrence of any other event;

4. The making of a will, trust, or other arrangement designed to carry out the agreement;

5. The ownership rights in and disposition of the death benefit in any life insurance policy;

6. The choice of law governing the construction of the agreement;

7. Any other matter, including their personal rights and obligations b) the right of a child to support may not be adversely affected by the agreement c) any provision regarding spousal support is not enforceable if the party against whom enforcement of the spousal support is sought was not represented by independent counsel or if the provision is unconscionable at the time of enforcement.

Divorce Lawyer in Valencia, California

Premarital agreements have become more popular in the past few decades as more couples realize their importance. They may not sound romantic but a marriage is a contract between two individuals with a fiduciary responsibility towards one another. From that perspective and in light of the fact that many marriages involve blended families and / or complicated financial histories such an agreement can be an intelligent way to approach the future.

At Barnholtz & Kugler, a law firm devoted to divorce and family law, you can work with a husband and wife legal team with the knowledge and experience needed to craft a proper premarital or postnuptial agreement. The firm also handles all types of divorce and family issues, such as child custody, spousal support, division of marital property, same sex marriage, domestic violence, and more. The legal team has more than 33 years of combined experience in their field. Contact their offices to schedule an appointment to discuss your legal matter at your earliest convenience.

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