Pre-Nuptial, Post-Nuptial and Cohabitation Agreements

It’s not particularly romantic, but with divorce looming at roughly 50 percent for first-time marriages and 60 percent for second timers, it’s not hard to understand why premarital agreements, also known as prenuptial or post-nuptial (antenuptial) agreements, make sense.  This is especially true when one or both individuals enter into a legal union with large personal assets. High net worth individuals are a unique group who often opt in favor of premarital agreements in an effort to protect their earnings now and into the future.

Typically referred to as “pre-nups”, these agreements are designed to maximize your efforts to protect your financial wellbeing should divorce occur.   Although premarital agreements are not always ironclad and in no sense should be thought of as an insurance policy, they afford an enhanced measure of protection compared to spouses who enter into marriage without them.

This often takes much of the “guess work” out of the marriage and, if done correctly, contributes toward the likelihood of achieving a fair and equitable result should the marriage fail.   Even when a marriage does not end in divorce, a carefully prepared premarital agreement can avoid many headaches in the probate court after a spouse dies.

If you are contemplating marriage and are considering a premarital agreement, please contact The Reis Law Firm as soon as possible.  The proper drafting, negotiation and execution of a premarital agreement requires advance planning, and agreements that are made at the last minute may not provide you the measure of protection that you are seeking.

Not every eventuality can be anticipated before marriage, and it sometimes happens that spouses require an agreement after marriage, which is known as a postnuptial agreement.  Postnuptial agreements have special requirements, which is why it is especially important that you be represented by qualified counsel before entering into them.  At The Reis Law Firm, we have considerable experience in negotiating postnuptial agreements.  Similarly, we have extensive trial experience litigating the validity and enforcement of premarital agreements and postnuptial agreements.

Today many couples choose not to marry.  Some choose to defer marriage and to live together for a period before marriage.  Couples who are living together have a special need to define the financial terms of their relationship, and for this reason, cohabitation agreements can help to reduce the uncertainty about their rights and obligations if the relationship comes to an end.  The Reis Law Firm is skilled at representing unmarried persons who wish to define their legal consequences of their relationship.