Signing a prenup is a great way to start your new life with absolute clarity and transparency. But there are certain things that you can’t include in it. One of the most common reasons couples fight and separate is finances. But, if a married couple is not on the same page about their finances. It could create problems down the road. A prenuptial agreement provides a clear financial roadmap the couple intends to follow after marriage.
But what are the things that it can’t include? And why is it that these things are not allowed as part of the prenuptial agreement?
Well, this blog post will help you understand why you cannot include certain things. Even if both partners want to include them. Understanding family law better before getting into a prenup will enable you to use this opportunity to the best of its potential.
Non-Financial Rules of a Prenup
The primary purpose of a prenup is to get the finances straight. From deciding how to divide your expenses to how to share your wealth. A prenup covers all financial aspects of a marriage. However, if you like to include anything that’s not related to finances, you can’t really do that. A prenup isn’t meant for non-financial matters. For example, you can’t put into your prenuptial agreement how you decide to raise your kids. Nor, how to divide the house chores, what religion the couple will follow, or any of the many things couples would want clarity on before they get married. Even if you include non-financial terms in your prenuptial agreement, the court will not uphold these terms.
One of the most important clauses of a prenup agreement is how the couple will divide their wealth if they end up getting divorced to keep things from getting ugly. As much as a couple would want to decide who’ll get the children’s custody if they’ve got children at the time of divorce in their prenuptial agreement, this is one thing that you can’t include in a prenup.
The court will always make decisions regarding child custody, child support, and parenting plans based on what’s best for the child. It won’t make a decision based on what you and your partner decided even before you had a child. And as a matter of fact, children aren’t a property whose distribution you get to decide.
However, that doesn’t mean you can’t include anything related to the children you’re going to have in your prenup. If one of the partners has a child from a past relationship and they receive child support, they can protect that aid through a prenup. You can also choose to include a clause in your prenup agreement that states that whatever any of the partner’s purchases for the children will belong to them only. You can also decide how you’ll divide and pay the college tuition fees of your children.
Anything That’s Unfair or Unreasonable
Couples are usually very much in love and all set to start their new lives together when signing a prenuptial agreement. They don’t want to think of the unthinkable. But because a prenup requires them to discuss how things will be if the couple parts ways in the future. They put down their pointers anyway. But, their love for each other might result in them agreeing to pointers that may be unreasonable or unfair to any side. Ideally, your prenup can’t contain anything that sounds unreasonable or unfair. If it does, it won’t be upheld in the future. The judge will invalidate all such clauses.
If the couple agrees the house will belong to one partner if the marriage ends in divorce. But at the time of divorce, the other partner doesn’t have the means to afford a new house. Then the judge will invalidate the clause because a prenup isn’t meant to inflict hardship on anyone.
Anything That Encourages Divorce
A prenuptial agreement is supposed to ensure things don’t get ugly if the marriage ends up in a divorce. Ideally, you should include how you decide to divide your assets and wealth if you decide to go for a divorce. You can’t include anything in your prenuptial agreement that encourages divorce or may become a reason for divorce. Even if your partner agrees to your unreasonable demands and puts them in the agreement, the court will invalidate them, and they’ll be deemed unenforceable.
Anything That’s Illegal
It goes without saying – anything that’s illegal can’t go into a prenuptial agreement. A prenuptial agreement is a legal document, and it definitely can’t include anything that has even an ounce of illegal touch. For example, if any of the partners has an illegal business (or unethical means of income), you can’t include the profit sharing or equity division for that business in your prenuptial agreement.
It’s important that you understand the essence of a prenuptial agreement. It’s a way of ensuring a happy and pleasant marriage, and it, in no way, should have an element of personal interest. A couple gets into a prenuptial agreement before they bind into the holy bond of marriage to ensure happiness in their life. And that’s how they should keep it.
Hire an experienced family lawyer to help you understand what exactly a prenup is and what it can and not include. Once you’ve got a better understanding, you can sit down with your partner. Then decide what pointers you should include. Don’t make signing a prenuptial agreement about satisfying your egos, but anything that starts with such intent doesn’t last long. Your attorney will be able to help you through the process and ensure the process doesn’t turn sour for anyone.
Visit our blog Spirit One for more information on prenuptial agreements and other aspects of family law. The more you know about family law, the better you’ll be able to understand the possibilities and consequences of your actions.