Get on the Path to Results Today.
Request Free Consultation

What Are the Steps for Getting a Prenup in Washington State?

Request Free Consultation
Posted By Cohen Family Law | December 10 2022 | Uncategorized

Beginning your life with someone new is one of the most cherished times in a person’s life. So many details go into planning a perfect wedding that sometimes, planning for life gets ignored. Marriage brings some serious legal issues that are advisable to consider before tying the knot.

Prenuptial Agreements Defined

Before marrying, the couple often signs a prenuptial agreement. This contract is in place to govern the division of assets, real and personal, if the couple later separates, divorces, or even dies. The contract is binding and will be interpreted as such by a judge if the time comes.

A prenuptial agreement must be completed and signed before the marriage. As soon as the couple legally marries, the contract is effective.

Do you Need a Prenup?

Though, prenups may not feel very romantic to discuss when you are anticipating your newlywed status. It may be necessary if the following items apply to you:

  • Debt is being brought into the marriage by one of both partners.
  • Valuable real and personal property is owned by one of the prospective spouses and will be brought into the marriage.
  • A significant wealth imbalance
  • Children from one or both spouses

If you are unsure whether you need a prenuptial agreement before you wed, contact Cohen Family Law, LLC. They can answer your questions and draw up any documents you deem necessary before walking down the aisle.

Issues Addressed by a Prenuptial Agreement

A prenuptial agreement is in place to protect the couple’s assets. The following may be considered when drawing up such a contract.

  • Ownership and administration of currently owned assets
  • Management of existing and future assets and properties
  • Proper compensation for managing separate assets
  • Requirements concerning life insurance policies
  • Directions for alimony, such as the amount, type, or duration, should the marriage end in divorce
  • Waiving the right to future alimony
  • Instructions for the allocation of property in the case of separation, divorce, or death

Can a Prenuptial Agreement be Enforced in Washington?

Several conditions must apply for a prenuptial agreement to be enforced in Washington. Cohen Family Law, LLC, can guide you through the process. Here are some of those requirements:

  • The contract must be in writing and signed by both parties in the presence of a notary.
  • Both parties’ attorneys must explain the agreement, and each client must sign that this was done and that they are entering into the terms of it voluntarily.
  • The agreement is enforceable once the marriage takes place.
  • A list of the couple’s assets, liabilities, and income must be present in the contract.

The family court judge will use a two-part test to form their decision to ensure that a prenup agreement is valid if one of the spouses challenges it. The two parts include the following:

  • The agreement must be fair and reasonable to the spouse who is not in the more powerful position. If the court finds it acceptable, then this can end the inquiry process. The agreement will be enforced.
  • If the first part of the test was not conclusive, the second part is based on two issues. Did each spouse fully disclose the amount of property, its value, and its character? The second question that requires an answer is whether both spouses entered the agreement voluntarily after seeking independent advice with the full knowledge of their rights.

If the answer is yes to both of these queries, then it is likely that a Washington state court will enforce the agreement.

Considering a Prenup? Contact Us.

If you are considering a prenuptial agreement, reach out to Cohen Family Law, LLC. We will use our experience and knowledge of family law to ensure that you are treated properly as you negotiate your prenup and beyond. We understand the law and how it is applied and can represent you in a way that most fairly provides for you now and in the future. Reach out to us today.

Free Consultation

  • *required fields
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.