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Denver Prenuptial & Postnuptial Agreements Attorneys

Elkus & Sisson attorneysTalking about prenuptial agreements can feel like a bit of a killjoy when you’re in the middle of planning one of the happiest days of your life. However, it’s important to protect yourself, your assets, and your future. You truly never know what the future holds, and the former couples sitting in divorce court right now never thought they’d end up in that position. Drafting a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement isn’t planning for your marriage to fail—it’s ensuring that you know what to expect in the unlikely event that it does.

Whether you want to draft a marital agreement or you need an attorney to review the one created by your partner’s attorney, you’ll need an experienced family law attorney with extensive experience with all types of marital agreements. Attorney Robert Pomper has over three decades of experience in these matters and can help advise you and your spouse on the best path forward.

Greenwood Village Marital Agreements Lawyers Serving Denver

Elkus & Sisson, P.C. is a marital agreements law firm in Greenwood Village located just a short drive from downtown Denver. Our address is 7100 E Belleview Avenue, Suite 101 Greenwood Village, CO 80111 (open in Google Maps). Call us today at (303) 567-7981 or fill out a contact form and we will call you to schedule an appointment to discuss your family law needs.

An Overview of Prenuptial and Postnuptial Agreements

Family Law Attorneys in Castle Rock, COThe term “marital agreements” covers both prenuptial and postnuptial agreements. A prenuptial agreement is one drafted and signed before a couple gets married. If drafted and executed properly, it is a  legally binding contract that considers both parties’ financial standing and assets to specify how property, debts, and other financial issues will be handled if one partner passes away or the couple divorces. 

Postnuptial agreements cover the same concerns as prenups, but they are executed after a couple has already married. The agreement may specify who will take which assets from the marriage, whether or not spousal support will be paid in the event of a divorce, and how debts will be managed.

There are numerous situations in which a prenup or postnup may be a good choice for you and your partner. If there is a significant earning disparity between the spouses, a marital agreement may give the higher-earning partner some reassurance that they are not being married simply for their money. In this situation, it’s important for the lower-earning spouse not to forget that this is also their time to protect their future. They don’t have to walk away from a marriage with nothing if it ends; they can strive to include spousal support or certain important assets in the prenuptial agreement. This is particularly important if they plan on giving up their career or educational opportunities to support their higher-earning partner.

Marital agreements may also be helpful for partnerships involving two wealthy individuals. When both people bring substantial assets to the marriage, handling them during a divorce can be a logistical nightmare. A prenup allows both parties to protect their assets and fairly divide marital assets.

Why Would Someone Agree to a Postnuptial Agreement?

When we talk about marital agreements, most people think of prenups. Postnuptial agreements are far less common. If one party wants a prenuptial agreement, the other party may have to negotiate it if they want to marry their partner. When a couple is already married, that leverage is gone—so what would make a non-working or lower-earning spouse agree to a postnup? Reasons include:

  • Family circumstances have changed: When a couple welcomes children, they may revisit their prenup to ensure that both parties are treated fairly. For example, perhaps one partner leaves their job to stay home with the children. The couple may execute a postnup to compensate the stay-at-home parent for the sacrifices made for the benefit of the family.
  • One party requests one as a condition of recovering from betrayal: Postnups are often drafted after a marriage goes through a rough period. Perhaps one party cheated,  hid an addiction, gambled away the couple’s savings, or otherwise betrayed their spouse’s trust. The betrayed partner may demand a postnup as a condition of giving their spouse another chance, as a way to protect themselves if their spouse slips up again.
  • The initial terms of a prenup are unfair: Perhaps the prenuptial agreement was incredibly one-sided, but the other party didn’t realize it at the time. Drafting a postnup would benefit both parties; the person benefiting from the initial agreement doesn’t have to worry about it getting thrown out, and the person left out of the initial prenup can protect themselves with the postnup.

What You Can Cover in a Prenup?

A prenuptial agreement can be tailored to your specific needs. Some of the topics you may wish to address include:

  • Whether or not spousal support is to be paid if the marriage ends and how much the recipient would get
  • How assets and income would be divided if the marriage ended
  • What happens to any debt accrued by the partners if the marriage ends
  • The allocation of attorney’s fees related to divorce

What Cannot Be Included in a Prenup?

However, it’s important to recognize that there are limitations. Marital agreements cannot be used to cover every aspect of your marriage. Topics you may not address in a marital agreement include:

  • Child support, since that is the right of the child and cannot be waived by either parent
  • The minutiae of the marriage, such as who will do chores and what the relationship with in-laws will look like
  • Anything so egregiously unfair that the court would likely invalidate the entire agreement
  • The Parties can put language in the Agreement about Spousal Maintenance and Attorney’s Fees but the those are issues that the Court has the jurisdiction to decide based on circumstances when the parties go to court even if the parties agreed to waive maintenance and attorney’s fees at time of the execution of the document.

Can a Marital Agreement Be Challenged?

Marital agreements can absolutely be challenged in court, especially if the terms are incredibly one-sided or one side claims coercion or duress. This is why it’s essential for both parties to secure legal representation and negotiate the terms of the agreement. Your attorney can explain to you why they do or do not recommend including certain conditions in the agreement, or urge you not to sign an agreement that is unfair to you. Settling these issues before a divorce is on the table is much less expensive than hashing them out in court.

Choose Elkus & Sisson to Help With Your Marital Agreement

Whether you need a prenup or postnup, the team at Elkus & Sisson, P.C. is here to help you protect your future. Schedule a consultation by contacting us online or calling us at 303-567-7981.