Just writing a prenuptial agreement — commonly called a prenup — is not enough. You need to make sure that the agreement is valid. You need to know that, if you decide to get divorced, it really is going to stand.
The last thing you want is to overlook something and find out when you need it the most that your prenup is going to get thrown out of court. That’s a devastating blow. Let’s take a look at a few reasons why it may happen.
You didn’t leave enough time for your spouse to think about the agreement
One of the biggest mistakes people make is putting off the prenup for too long. Maybe they didn’t want to bring it up. Maybe they didn’t realize they wanted it until the wedding day grew closer and felt more real. Whatever the reason, they put it off until right before the wedding. That doesn’t give the other person time to really consider it, so it may not stand.
Your spouse felt like they were under duress
Being under duress is another way of saying they felt forced into signing it. That could mean it’s not something that they would have agreed to under normal circumstances, and they can argue that it should not stand as a result. In fact, waiting too long is one type of duress. Just the embarrassment of canceling a wedding at the last minute, or the financial impact of doing so, could be enough.
You did not write it down
Just because both spouses agreed to something when talking about the wedding doesn’t mean it will stand as a prenup. They have to get it in writing. For instance, maybe you have more money than your spouse and they assure you they won’t take any of your income in the divorce. Can you prove they said it? Will they say they never did? That’s not enough for a prenup.
You did not disclose everything before your spouse signed
If you don’t tell your spouse what assets you have, they can’t make any sort of realistic financial contract with you. That’s what a prenup is, after all. Full disclosure is required. Lying about assets or anything else to fraudulently trick your spouse into signing just means that the court is going to throw the agreement out when you get divorced.
Making a prenup
Again, you absolutely do not want to find out about these mistakes during your divorce. Carefully consider what you need to do to draft a prenup that is going to stand.