couple signing a prenuptial agreement

What Happens When You Divorce with a Prenuptial Agreement in Place?

A prenuptial agreement, commonly referred to as a “prenup,” is a contract put in place by a couple intending to marry. There are many things that can be accomplished by a prenup, including determining how the couple will divide marital property should the marriage end in divorce. Prenups can also hold vast amounts of important information, especially financial information, regarding the respective situations of each soon-to-be spouse prior to marriage. What exactly happens, should a marriage end in divorce, with a prenup in place?

Does a prenup simplify divorce proceedings?

When there is a prenup in place, the divorce process can substantially change. How it will change exactly will depend on the terms of the prenuptial agreement. In a prenup, the parties have the option to include a substantial amount of important information and terms of the marriage and what will happen in the event of divorce. For instance, a prenup can include:

  • A list of both party’s individual assets they intend to bring into the marriage
  • Designation as to which individual assets will be considered separate property in the event of divorce and, thus, not subject to division
  • Details regarding how the couple will divide what is considered to be marital property in the event of divorce
  • Details regarding who will take responsibility for debts incurred during the marriage
  • Limitations on spousal support, or “alimony,” in the event of divorce

The vast majority of prenups, at the very least, address how property should be divided in the event of divorce and which property should be considered marital and which should be considered separate. With these terms in place, the divorce process is often much simpler. Division of the assets and debt can be one of the most contentious and complicated aspects of the divorce process. A prenup can eliminate the need for the court to intervene in this matter. This is why a prenup can save both parties a great deal of time and money should a marriage end in divorce.

In some instances, which are generally the exception rather than the rule, a prenup can complicate a divorce rather than simplify it. This usually only happens should the prenup be contested during a divorce. Should one spouse request that the court reject a prenup, the divorce process can become more drawn out and, thus, take up more time and money to finalize. A party, however, must have a valid, or legitimate, reason for requesting that the court reject a premarital agreement. The judge will be tasked with determining whether the reason asserted is legitimate. Legitimate reasons for invalidating a prenup may include when a party can prove that the prenup was the result of coercion or duress or the prenup is unconscionable in its term and should be thrown out.

Florida Divorce Attorneys

At Orlando Family Team, we are here to work tirelessly on your behalf to help ensure that the divorce process is as smooth as possible and that your best interests are protected along the way. Should you have any questions, we are here with answers. Contact us today.