When you get married, one of the things that you may want to know is that if you sign a prenup and get divorced what happens? Most people know that prenup may help to reduce the divorce process time.
But, sometimes, it might be the reason for a lengthy divorce. To know how it can reduce or increase divorce complexity, we need to know two other things. They are:
How does a divorce process work?
Divorce is a straightforward to obtain process in any state. The procedure for obtaining a divorce is never difficult, regardless of where you live.
One spouse files a complaint (“complaint”) requesting the divorce, and the other spouse responds (“answer”). Following this, the parties exchange information on various elements of the marriage as part of the divorce discovery process.
If the couple can’t resolve all of their divorce-related concerns through negotiation, they’ll have to go to trial, where a judge will rule on them.
But, the total process often takes so much time, especially if any party wants to drag it out. Just imagine if there would any pre-contract between the spouse about the rights of each spouse, it would be easier for the judge to decide the divorce decree. That’s where prenup comes.
What is a prenup?
A prenuptial agreement, commonly known as a “prenup,” is a contract between two people before marriage. The agreement’s purpose is to define each person’s rights and responsibilities during marriage and in the event of divorce or death. Prenups can address a wide variety of issues, such as:
– How property will be divided if the couple gets divorced
– Who will get what if one spouse dies
– Whether spousal support will be paid if the couple gets divorced
– How much debt each person is responsible for
– What happens to pets in the event of divorce or death
Prenups can be as simple or complex as the couple desires. They are typically used by people who have significant assets or debts or who want to protect their rights in the event of divorce.
If You Sign a Prenup and Get Divorced What Happens? 2 Things Might Happen
Now come to our main question. What is the rule of a prenup in a divorce process? There are two possible outcomes if you sign a prenup and get divorced.
#1. It may help to reduce the divorce process time:
The first possibility is that the terms of your prenup could make getting divorced easier and faster. This is because the key issues in your divorce will already have been decided by you and your spouse ahead of time. All that will be left for the court to do is to rubber-stamp the terms of your agreement.
This can be a huge time-saver, especially if you and your spouse can agree on the terms of your divorce. It can also save you a lot of money in legal fees, as you won’t have to pay your attorneys to negotiate on your behalf.
Of course, this only works if you and your spouse can agree on the terms of your prenup. If you cannot reach an agreement, you’ll likely end up spending just as much time (and money) getting divorced as you would have without a prenup.
# It might be the reason for a lengthy divorce:
The second possibility is that your prenup could actually make getting divorced more difficult and time-consuming if any of the spouse claim that the terms of the prenup are unfair or express their doubtfulness about the validity of the prenup.
In this situation, courts need to spend extra time to justify whether the prenup term is valid, which could prolong your divorce. If you’re hoping to get divorced quickly and easily, this is something you’ll want to avoid.
To be a valid, legally enforceable prenup contract, it is essential that both spouses fully understand the terms of the agreement and sign it voluntarily. The court may throw out the whole agreement if there is doubt about either.
It also must be in writing format. Although you and your spouse can begin the negotiation process with an oral agreement, you’ll need to put your terms in writing, and each of you will need to sign it with a lawyer or notary public present.
Law also requires that the terms of prenup must be fair for both parties. If a court finds that the terms of a prenup are unfair to one spouse, then the court may refuse to enforce the agreement.
All of these things will just make the divorce process more difficult if you sign a prenup with your spouse before marriage. You might want to think about it twice before saying yes to signing the prenup. Weigh all the pros and cons first to make the best decision for yourself.
Know more pros and cons of a prenup from this video:
FAQs on If You Sign a Prenup and Get Divorced What Happens
Does a prenup cover child custody or child support?
No, a prenup cannot cover child custody or child support. The court decides these matters based on the child’s best interests and cannot be contractually waived in advance.
You cannot use your prenup to reference future child support and custody plans. These are your child’s rights, not your rights- so you cannot contract them away.
If you sign a prenup, can you get alimony?
It varies from state to state. In many states, the court will unlikely enforce the waiver if you sign a prenup that includes a waiver of alimony and later divorce. While a few states allow alimony waivers.
However, the court may use its discretionary power. For example, if one spouse was significantly more wealthy than the other at the time of the divorce, the court may find that waiving alimony would be unfair and unenforceable.
Can a prenup be set aside if it’s unfair?
Yes, if a court finds that the terms of a prenup are unfair to one spouse, then the court may refuse to enforce the agreement.
It is also essential that both spouses fully understand the terms of the agreement and sign it voluntarily. If there is any doubt about either of these things, the court may throw out the whole agreement.
Can my prenup be enforced if I live in a community property state?
Yes, your prenup can be enforced even if you live in a community property state. However, there may be some limitations on what you can and cannot contract away in advance. For example, you may be unable to waive your right to community property in a prenup.
Each state has its laws governing prenuptial agreements. Consult an experienced family law attorney in your state to determine if a prenup is right for you.
What happens if you don’t sign a prenup?
If you don’t sign a prenup and later get divorced, the court will use the laws of your state to divide your property and debts. In community property states, the court will presume that spouses equally own all property and debt acquired during the marriage.
In an equitable distribution state, then, the division of property will be decided by a judge based on various factors.
Not having a prenup can also make the divorce process more difficult. If you and your spouse can’t agree on dividing your property, you’ll have to go to court and let a judge decide for you. This can be expensive and time-consuming.
Should I get a prenup?
It depends on your circumstances. If you have a lot of property or debt, are getting married later in life, or have children from a previous relationship, then a prenup might be right for you.
Prenups can be a great way to protect your rights and property in the event of divorce, but they’re not right for everyone. If you’re considering signing a prenup, talk to an experienced family law attorney first to ensure it’s the right decision.
I hope you got the answer to what happens if you sign a prenup and get divorced. This is a good practice for couples, but it will not always be helpful in the divorce process. You have to be careful about the prenup’s terms before signing it.