Law Offices of Hannah E. Sims, LL.M.
Oakland Certified Family Law Specialist

Is your prenup vulnerable to a legal challenge?

Prenuptial agreements play a massive role during the property division process of a divorce. They can also play a crucial role during the marriage itself. Having a prenuptial agreement is an important part of marriage nowadays, and it can take a lot of stress out of a high-asset marriage too. However, couples that have prenups often incorrectly believe that the document is immune to a legal challenge. This simply isn't so.

Prenuptial agreements, just like any legal document, can fall to the wayside because of a legal challenge. The circumstances surrounding a prenup must be compliant and legal, otherwise a spouse could challenge the document in court and get part or all of the prenup thrown out.

But what kind of conditions could cause a prenup to fall apart upon a legal challenge? Here are some common reasons:

  • The first is balance or fairness. This concept is called "conscionability," and though it doesn't mean that a prenup has to be perfectly balanced and fair, it does assert that a prenup must not be so unfair that one spouse is clearly favored over the other.
  • Another reason is time and consideration. Each spouse must have a fair amount of time to read over the prenup and consider how the provisions will impact them. If the spouse is pressured into signing without having the time to consider the prenup, the document may not hold up under legal review.
  • And then of course there is the actual information contained within the prenup. If the provisions themselves contain illegal topics (such as child custody or support), illegal information, or false information, then the prenup could be deemed invalid.

Source: FindLaw, "Top 10 Reasons a Premarital Agreement May be Invalid," Accessed Jan. 18, 2018

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