What is a Premarital Agreement?
A premarital agreement (or prenuptial agreement) is probably the most important contract that a couple can consider before getting married. A premarital agreement is just an agreement that every couple makes before entering into the legal union of marriage.
Whether they realize it or not, every couple enters into marriage with some kind of a prenup. That may sound like a weird statement, but it’s true.
By the time they say “I do”, every marrying couple has agreed to either:
Let their marital and divorce rights be determined by default state laws; OR
Create and sign a written premarital agreement that allows them to take back control of their rights in a way that meets their needs.
Sadly, all marriages eventually end--either by the death of one spouse or because of a divorce. When a couple gets married without a written premarital contract, their prenuptial agreement is to allow the default state laws to control what rights they have while they are married, and what rights they have when the marriage terminates by death or divorce.
The purpose of entering into a written prenup before marriage is that it allows a couple to "pre-agree" to the terms that apply when the marriage eventually ends by death or divorce. To a large degree, signing a prenup allows a couple to control what happens in the event of a divorce or death, rather than scrambling to figure out and protect their rights under the often confusing and unfair default laws of their state.
A well-drafted premarital agreement should decrease the chance that a couple will go broke fighting each other in divorce court in the event of a marital disaster, and increase the chance that their marriage will end with minimal conflict.
PACKAGE - $1,395
People often ask: Do I need a lawyer for a prenup? We cannot answer that question for you, but would you know how to write your own wedding insurance policy if you tried? Probably not. Legal contracts can be complicated and challenging to do the right way.
We can say with confidence that the prenups drafted by our prenuptial attorneys can provide additional security for the life of your marriage. Your prenuptial agreement lawyer will guide you through the process and craft a customized premarital agreement that will work for you and your spouse. Our flat-fee package is the perfect option for couples who have a limited budget.
PRENUP PLANNING CONSULTATION. Your attorney will schedule a call with you to explore the terms to include in your prenup that will best fit your needs, and answer any questions you may have. This conversation is a critical part of the process because your input is what allows us to draft a custom agreement for your specific situation.
FAST TURNAROUND. Your draft will be completed and sent to you for review within five (5) business days after we get all of the information we need to prepare your customized premarital agreement.
PRENUP REVIEW CONSULTATION. After you and your fiancé have had the opportunity to read and discuss your prenuptial agreement, you will schedule a follow-up call with your attorney. During this call your attorney will answer any questions, make sure you understand the document, and discuss any changes that may be needed.
PRIVACY. The information you share and everything you discuss with your attorney is protected by the attorney-client privilege.
A CUSTOMIZED, READY-TO-SIGN PRENUP. Your attorney will make any changes needed to finalize your prenuptial agreement based on the follow-up call, and send it to you for signature.
Many clients choose to waive the confidentiality privilege to allow their fiancé to participate in the initial call and/or the prenup review consultation, to provide complete transparency throughout the prenup preparation process.
If your fiancé is not represented by an attorney and you want to involve him/her in the prenup planning and drafting process, your fiancé is welcome to join in any of our discussions and ask questions. However, we can only provide actual legal advice to the party to the marriage who is our client.
WHAT ABOUT ALIMONY?
A premarital agreement can be drafted to provide for a minimum amount of alimony to be paid to either spouse in the event of a divorce, in whatever amount and for how long a marrying couple agrees. When a couple can agree on alimony terms in their prenuptial agreement, they can get married with peace of mind and confidence because they made a fair deal in advance—just in case things don’t go as planned.
Ready to learn more about premarital agreements or postnuptial agreements? Schedule a free, confidential, no-obligation call with a prenup lawyer. Available for VA, FL, NY or NJ only.