What is a Postnuptial Agreement?

Very often, couples who are already married regret not drafting a prenuptial agreement. Fortunately, they may still draft a postnuptial agreement that functions essentially the same as a prenuptial agreement. However, sometimes one partner will feel uncomfortable suggesting one to their spouse. This is understandable, though also usually unwarranted. Couples draft postnuptial agreements for several reasons. While they can be a sensitive issue, postnuptial agreements can also be a useful and practical solution to many different marital and financial issues. If you think you and your spouse may be interested in drafting a postnuptial agreement, here are some of the questions you may have:

Why would a couple draft a postnuptial agreement?

Since postnuptial agreements can be a touchy subject, you must approach your spouse honestly and sincerely when stating your reasoning for wanting one. Once you are both on board for drafting a postnuptial agreement, you may do the following:

  • Define your financial relationship 
  • Clarify how property and assets will be divided in a divorce
  • Address whether one spouse will pay spousal or child support and for how long following a divorce
  • Decide how marital debts will be divided in a divorce
  • Address financial insecurity in your marriage
  • Request future support if one spouse stops working to care for children
  • Avoid the stress of the equitable distribution process
  • Define each spouse’s wishes for the property they bought or owned before the marriage
  • Protect newly-acquired, significant assets obtained via lottery, a large inheritance, job promotion, etc.
  • Define how assets will transfer if either spouse dies during the marriage

How do I know that my New Jersey postnuptial agreement is valid?

There are five primary qualifications for a valid postnuptial agreement in New Jersey: They are as follows:

  • There must be no evidence of manipulation or deceit by either party
  • The terms must be “fair and reasonable” to both parties
  • Each party must retain separate legal counsel, or explicitly waive their right to counsel in writing
  • The financial status of each party and any of the assets discussed in the agreement must be fully and accurately disclosed
  • Both parties must have a reasonable amount of time to reach a thoughtful decision regarding whether or not they should sign the agreement

Contact our experienced New Jersey firm

If you and your spouse are ready to address some of the issues mentioned above, please do not hesitate to contact our compassionate and knowledgeable firm to help you draft a postnuptial agreement that works in everyone’s best interest.

Before taking any sort of legal action, it is important to discuss your legal matter with an experienced attorney. Contact The Radol Law Firm to discuss any divorce and family law matters you may be faced with.