High-stakes negotiations are often characterized as intense back-and-forth battles where only one party wins. The winner takes all while the other party may suffer a loss of both objectives and dignity. A loss of dignity in negotiations for a prenup can have a long-lasting effect on the relationship. Negotiating a prenup can (and should) be about coming to a mutually beneficial agreement for both parties. While the marital relationship is considered an economic as well as social partnership, establishing a foundation for the economics of the relationship can be challenging. The goal of the negotiation should be conducive to creating a durable, family-oriented agreement. Below are five reasons the “art of the deal” is not a zero sum game when it comes to family: Continue Reading
One of the most common questions I receive from clients is how to bring up a prenuptial agreement with a future spouse. There is no uniform answer to this because every couple has its own dynamics, and a prenup conversation should reflect this. With that being said, there are some basic ideas to help your path to a prenup go more smoothly. Continue Reading
In today’s constantly connected world, the way we interact with one another has changed. Relationship milestones are now often celebrated through technology and are sometimes reached through technology itself. Becoming Facebook official sometimes marks the real beginning of a relationship. Sharing a Netflix password may signify that the relationship is serious. Having a joint iTunes account is often part of a modern relationship. In a world that is increasingly dependent on the use of technology, how can you safeguard your own digital assets? Continue Reading
A postnuptial agreement (“postnup”) is an agreement entered into by a couple after marriage. The agreement can cover a range of topics from lifestyle issues to the couple’s wishes if they choose to divorce. A postnup, like a prenup, is designed to protect the marriage and provide the couple with security. Because it is a legally binding agreement, a postnup must conform to certain requirements based on the state in which it is enforced. While couples often choose to work with an attorney to execute a postnup, some couples try to do it on their own. This was the case in the recent Ballesteros decision. Continue Reading
Prenuptial agreements can include many different areas, including maintenance arrangements in the event of a divorce. Specific requirements and limitations on maintenance provisions vary from state-to-state. A celebrity prenup has recently come into the news because one spouse is challenging the maintenance provision of the agreement and requesting a modification. It does not appear that he is challenging the prenup itself, just the maintenance provision. Continue Reading
Ken Griffin, considered Illinois’ richest man and worth billions, has recently settled his divorce case right as the trial over his prenuptial agreement was set to begin. Griffin and his estranged wife have been in a divorce battle for over a year. The main issue was the validity of a prenuptial agreement the couple had executed.
Although the final prenuptial agreement was not signed until the day before the couple’s wedding, the court ruled that the agreement is valid. This case is a great example of how hard it is to challenge the validity of a prenuptial agreement. The court will look at many factors in making the determination. Continue Reading
The popularity of prenuptial agreements is on the rise for couples of all ages. A prenup can be just as important to couples on their first marriage and in their 20’s and 30’s, as it is to individuals on a second or third marriage and in their 40’s, 50’s and 60’s (and on up). Today, many couples want to establish property and financial rights before marriage. The content of the agreement is unique because it is based upon the couple’s particular goals and financial situation. If a prenup is properly prepared, future disputes over money and other issues can be avoided. Many people think of a prenuptial agreement as a contract like any other. That is not exactly the case. Because of the delicate nature of prenuptial agreements and the relationship of the parties, it is much more than just a contract. In addition to general contract principles, prenups come with a set of rules and regulations all their own. For that reason, how a couple arrives at agreement and how the prenup is drafted is extremely important.
As I reviewed some of my previous blogs, I realized my next piece would be an important one because it is my 50th blog post! A while back, I set out to write and post quality pieces on different topics and issues within family law. Looking back on some of my more popular posts, I realized that prenups have become a very popular talking point. In the past, I have covered areas on why people should consider prenups, new and different types of agreements, and more. Then I realized: I haven’t yet discussed what happens after someone decides to actually get a prenup. Once you make the decision to start the prenup process, what do you do?
After working on a variety prenups for all different types of clients over the years, I’ve realized that no matter the situation, everyone can benefit from some basic information on prenuptial agreements. I wanted to provide answers to some of the more commonly-asked questions I receive from clients.
It happens all the time: a couple starts getting serious and may start making major purchases together. For some couples it may be furniture or a car, but many couples also choose to purchase or adopt a pet. While the relationship is going smoothly, everything is fine; but what happens when the couple breaks up? A big problem that arises in a breakup or divorce is where the pet will go. According to recent stories in the news, custody cases involving pets are on the rise in the United States. You might know of someone who went through this issue after a breakup – the former couple ends up disagreeing on whom the pet actually belongs to and who should get to keep it. However, it is possible to address these concerns in a prenuptial agreement, preventing hostile and potentially costly disagreement in the event of a breakup.