Modifying a Prenuptial Agreement in New Jersey
Prenuptial agreements can be very useful to create understanding about what will happen to each spouse’s property in the event of a divorce or separation. However, the feelings you each have about what should happen to property may change over time, necessitating a change to the agreement. If you need help modifying a prenuptial agreement in New Jersey, it may be in your best interest to work with a dedicated marital agreements attorney. They could help you find a fair way to change the terms of an existing contract to better fit your current wishes.
What Makes a Prenup Valid?
For any marital contract to be legally valid, it must be entered into freely and voluntarily. Each party must to be of sound mind and of age for marriage. There must also be full disclosure of all assets, liabilities, and expenses. Although either party may waive their right to have their own personal attorney review the agreement, it is wise for each party to have a personal legal advocate.
One key step many attorneys skip to ensure the validity and enforceability of a prenup is to do a deposition in which the parties actually come to the attorney and the lawyer then asks them specific questions. These questions and answers are then recorded by a court reporter. This could serve as definitive proof that the other party was aware of each clause in the contract, and that they acknowledged their understanding under oath, voluntarily, with full disclosure, and with adequate opportunity to engage their own counsel.
Making Addendums to the Prenuptial Agreement
The most common way of modifying a prenuptial agreement in New Jersey is by making an addendum to the existing document. This means that a new clause is added in writing, and signed by both parties after having a fair chance to contact counsel, understand the implications of the amendment, and represent their best interests. These alterations must be carefully laid out in order to ensure that they are enforceable.
It is also important to note that clauses concerning children, custody, or child support cannot be enforced as these issues must be decided by a judge during the divorce process. Any content regarding these issues will not be considered.
Revoking a Premarital Contract
In writing, spouses may agree that they are revoking all their rights and obligations under the prenup and that they are deeming it invalid. However, this all depends on the specific circumstances of a couple’s life, and great caution must be taken when annulling a prenup. There should be opportunity for the same type of disclosure, negotiation, and clarification that there is when drafting a contract to ensure that no party is under duress, coerced, or making an uninformed decision.
An Attorney Could Help You Change Your Prenup
People think that just by the virtue of the fact that two people signed the prenup that they are completely protected. However, if the prenup is not created properly in accordance with statute, it may be unenforceable. Even if it was valid, things in your life may change, and you may wish to alter your prenup to better reflect your living situation. An attorney could help you through the process of modifying a prenuptial agreement in New Jersey and protect your rights. Call now to get started.