When you said “I, do” to your spouse, you may have envisioned spending years together, perhaps well into old age. However, not every marriage in Ohio is meant to last. Some couples recognize this prior to marrying, and will execute a prenuptial agreement, outlining how they will resolve divorce legal issues, such as property division and alimony, should their marriage not last.
However, it is important that a prenup is drafted with all the proper formalities, or else it could be challenged in a divorce. The following is a brief overview of the ways a prenup could be deemed invalid.
Prenups are essentially contracts, and as such, before drafting one each party needs to fully disclose all of their assets and debts. Hiding assets in order to avoid having them subject to property division in a divorce could ultimately lead to undesirable penalties.
Coercion or duress
If a prenup is not entered into freely by both parties, it could spell trouble when it comes to enforcing it down the road. Prenups that one party was forced into signing or that were signed the night before walking down the aisle may be deemed invalid based on coercion or duress.
Prenups, like any contract, must be executed with certain formalities. A poorly drafted prenup or one that was not properly filed, witnessed or written could be deemed invalid.
You did not have an attorney
When it comes to prenups, each party needs to have his or her own attorney. An attorney can help ensure your rights are protected, and that the final document is not too one-sided. An agreement that is so one-sided as to be unconscionable may also be considered invalid.
Ultimately, if you want to execute a prenup before heading into marriage it can help to seek the assistance of an attorney. These professionals understand what is necessary for a prenup to be enforceable in court and may be a useful resource.