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You Agreed But Does the Prenup Really Hold Up?

 In Blog, Family Law

In Texas, prenuptial agreements are difficult to render invalid but not impossible.  If the following requirements were not met, the prenup agreement may be tossed out:

Must be in writing.

You cannot have a verbal agreement in this case.  A prenuptial agreement must be in writing and signed by both parties.

Must be signed before marriage.

A premarital agreement must be reviewed and signed before you are married.  This also means you cannot already be in a common law marriage with your partner.  Yes, Texas is one of the few states that recognize common law marriage.

Must not be unconscionable: unfair to the extreme.

Most contracts cannot be so unfair that they put one party at a complete disadvantage while the other benefits.  The same is true for prenups.  Be fair and reasonable.

Must have accurate knowledge of each other’s financial state.

Before signing, you have to know what debt, assets, and money your partner has.  This is important. Part of a prenup, generally, is waiving the right to or accepting responsibility for financial items.  You must have an accurate picture of what you will be giving up.

Must be signed willingly.

It is not enough to say you signed the prenup because otherwise your spouse wouldn’t marry you.  That is not considered “forced.”  Some reasons the court may agree a person did not sign a prenup voluntarily are:

    • Extreme pressure or threatened to sign.
    • Blindsided with the prenup and not given adequate time to review and understand before signing. Do not present a prenup to your partner the day of your wedding.
    • Deceived into signing. Do not present them with only the signature page and tell them it is something different.
    • Lack capacity. You must have the ability to understand what you are signing.  The prenup should be in a language you can read and you should be of sound mind at the time you agree to the terms.

To get a full understanding of your rights, responsibilities, and requirements for prenuptial agreements, give Paul a call:  817-860-9200.

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