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A prenuptial agreement or prenup, is a written agreement or contract signed by parties who intend to get married. It is signed before the marriage. Sometimes parties sign the same type of agreement during the marriage. In that event it may be referred to as a "post nup". (You can assume that when this article refers to a "prenup", that the same rules apply for "post nups") Please call 1-800-NOW DIVORCE if you wish to discuss preparation of, and issues pertaining to a prenup. Or Click Here to email any questions that you have. Typically, a Florida prenup provides for what will occur upon divorce with regard to issues such as division of property and debt, and alimony or spousal support. Usually what a party will get or not get under a prenup in the event of divorce, is far different than what a judge would order upon divorce if there were no prenup.
Sometimes a Florida prenup will provide that neither party will get alimony, no matter how long the marriage is. Or it may provide that a party will not get property or assets which they might otherwise get if there were no prenup. (such as the income from their spouse's non-marital asset which they might otherwise get in certain circumstances) So a prenuptial agreement can help a party avoid paying alimony or splitting property. Or it can hurt a party who, if there were no prenup, would be entitled to alimony under the law because of the length of the marriage for example. (or entitled to property under the law)
Major battles are often fought over prenups in Florida divorce courts. The party who feels that they're getting a bad deal because of the Florida prenup may try and have it invalidated by saying for example, that they were coerced into signing it. Or. they may say that the other party didn't accurately divulge their assets.( i.e. that they would not have signed the prenup if they knew how much money the other party really had) Prenups can sometimes be upheld as valid in Florida even if they were made in another state. They cannot be overturned just because they are a bad deal for someone. (unless the other party didn't make full financial disclosure of their assets and financial condition)
Often, Florida prenups are non-modifiable. So for example if a party is working at a good job when they sign a prenup that waives their right to claim alimony, they will still get no alimony if at the time of the divorce they are unable to work because of a disability. About the only rights that can't be waived in a prenup is the right to seek child-support if a child is born during the marriage. Also, a party cannot waive the right to seek attorney fees and temporary alimony in the Florida divorce from the other party.
So if you are considering presenting a Florida pre-nuptial agreement to your fiance, it is best to do it a sufficient period of time before the wedding . That will give the other side sufficient time to contemplate the terms of the prenup and try to negotiate a better deal if they care to. It will also allow for the opportunity to secure a lawyer. (it may also be a good idea to give the other side money for a lawyer of their own choosing if they cannot afford one.That will foreclose the argument that they could not get an attorney to help them understand the prenuptial agreement and negotiate on their behalf) Doing all of these things may stop the other side from successfully challenging the validity of the prenup upon divorce.
Lastly, a prenup can provide that a party waives certain rights that they would otherwise have upon the death of the other party. (those rights may include the elective share, which is the right to receive thirty percent of the estate of the other party, and homestead rights which gives certain rights in the family home upon the death of the other party)
No matter where you live in Florida Attorney Arnie Gruskin will be happy to discuss with you preparation of and issues pertaining to a Florida prenuptial agreement. Call 1-800-NOW DIVORCE for assistance. Or Click Here to email any questions that you have.