While most people know what marriage contracts are and how they protect couples, misunderstandings are common about how the processes of obtaining a marriage contract work. For an agreement to be enforced by the court with little space for attacks, a lot of ground must be covered in the original language of the document. A good marriage contract will define in detail definitions of separate and conjugal property, the property that is protected, the distribution of property, the amount of maintenance and the fact that the agreement itself was negotiated fairly and equitably. The purpose of the agreement should be clear no matter who reads it. Ideally, a marriage contract is prepared by a lawyer for one spouse and given to the other spouse for verification. The Prenup should be negotiated well before the wedding date and in no case the wedding day! When two people are considering getting married, it is important that they talk about serious issues that will affect them during their marriage. Although less romantic, it can also be important for the couple to discuss what would happen in the event of death or divorce, and to set out their wishes in a marriage contract. This is particularly the case for second marriages or concerns about the protection of money, property or business. Most people in Tennessee don`t get married and think they`re going to get divorced. However, divorces are becoming more frequent and people understand that it could happen to them. This is why, in some situations, a marriage contract can be a good idea to protect property both during marriage and through divorce. The best way to ensure that a marriage contract is legally enforceable is to consult a family law lawyer.
An experienced lawyer can help clients who are about to get married understand how a marriage contract can protect their interests and how to establish an agreement that has the best chance of being judged. In addition to the division of property, a financially dependent spouse may be required to receive support after a divorce, based on things that the spouse may have abandoned to consent to the marriage. Maintenance plans that are fair and do not financially impoverish the disadvantaged spouse are usually upheld by the courts. Marriage contracts can make the following arrangements for alimony: While entering into a wedding is a joyful event, planning for all sorts of contingencies is an important step in making sure you and your family are protected. At Martin Heller Potempa & Sheppard, PLLC, we are committed to carefully advising our Nashville clients on the provisions that should be included in their prenup agreements, negotiating these terms, and properly performing a valid contract. Considering all the potential problems with agreements between a couple before marriage, a written marriage contract is often the best protection available. . . .