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How is a Postnuptial Agreement Created?

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Posted By Cohen Family Law | March 5 2023 | Uncategorized

Postnuptial agreements are legal contracts between spouses that outline property division and asset distribution if the marriage ends in a divorce or separation. These differ from prenuptial agreements, which are signed before the marriage by being signed after the couple has already married.

Things to Consider When Contemplating a Postnuptial Agreement

Is a postnuptial agreement right for you? Before creating one, it is critical that you and your spouse decide if it is the correct decision for your marriage. They can have practical advantages in the following situations:

  • When one spouse has substantial assets, they may want to protect them if the marriage ever dissolves.
  • Postnups can be used to protect the value of a business if one spouse is the owner. These contracts can be reassuring to investors and can also protect a business from debt.
  • If the couple has children from a previous relationship, they might want a postnuptial agreement to protect the future of those children.
  • When one spouse is in considerable debt, the other spouse may want the postnuptial agreement to ensure they are not responsible for that debt if a divorce should come to pass.

If any of the above points apply to you, you should speak to your family law attorney about a postnuptial agreement.

Six Steps to Creating a Postnuptial Agreement

You will want to take several steps to create a postnuptial agreement. Some are more obvious than others. The steps we suggest are listed below:

  1. Seek Legal Counsel. Postnuptial agreements can be complicated, so it is critical to hire an experienced family law attorney who understands the laws in your state.
  2. Outline your goals with your Washington state family law attorney. Discuss your goals and concerns so that the agreement covers the specifics you want to have covered.
  3. Provide in-depth financial data so that you can have a legitimate, effective postnuptial agreement created. The following information is essential to detail:
    • List of assets, including personal property, investments, and real estate.
    • Accurate accounting of all debts, including mortgages, credit cards, auto loans, and other loans.
    • Provide a precise list of income from salary, bonuses, and commissions, and take into consideration all sources of revenue.
  4. Review and Negotiate all portions of the agreement with your spouse. It is critical that both partners agree to the assets, income, and debt listed and that they both understand the contract before signing it.
  5. Sign and notarize the contract after both spouses are satisfied with the contents of the postnuptial agreement. Be sure and keep it in a safe place and revisit it occasionally as updates are needed.

After your attorney has all the information listed above, they will draft the agreement, listing how debts and assets will be divided in the case of a divorce. At this point, provisions for spousal support, or alimony, can also be noted.

While postnuptial agreements demand contentious consideration, detailed financial information, and the precision of an experienced family law attorney, they can create a legally binding contract that can protect you and your assets. This contract can ensure a more amicable divorce or separation with more ease in the division of assets.

Contact Us For Help With Your Washington State Postnuptial Agreement

The attorneys with Cohen Family Law, LLC, can help you protect your assets by drafting a postnuptial agreement that ensures your business and property are secure.

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