If you are engaged to be married or plan to be in the near future, it’s important to consider whether a prenuptial agreement is right for you.

Taylor, TX Prenuptial Attorneys

Couples marrying in the United States are increasingly requesting prenuptial agreements. These agreements may not be the most comfortable topic to address, but they substantially benefit both parties. While optimism and fear are pervasive influences on why a person may avoid entering into a premarital agreement, the reality is that these agreements provide safety nets and prevent additional discord during a separation or divorce.

Prenuptial agreements are contracts, so they must abide by Texas’ strict procedural and substantive laws governing these unique contractual agreements. Those contemplating marriage should consult with a Taylor prenuptial attorney at the Law Office of Jason Wright. The attorneys at the firm have extensive experience handling these types of family law matters and ensuring that couples execute an effective and legally binding premarital agreement. Contact the Taylor prenuptial agreement lawyers at the Law Office of Jason Wright, PLLC, by calling 512-884-1221.

What Are Prenuptial Agreements?

Texas Family Code, Chapter 4, governs the state’s premarital and marital property agreements. Texas courts generally refer to prenuptial agreements or prenups as premarital agreements. The agreements generally control property division upon separation or divorce, such as land, buildings, accounts, and vehicles.

When Do You Need a Premarital Agreement?

While prenuptial agreements seem, on their face, to protect the more wealthy or “monied” spouse, in reality, both parties can benefit from these agreements. In Texas, any money made during the marriage is considered “community property.” Accordingly, if a Texas couple decides to divorce without a premarital agreement, any assets accrued during the marriage will be split in a “just and right manner.” This can mean that it is divided equally between the parties but many times one party might receive a larger percentage of one asset over the other party.

These agreements protect assets, business interests, children, and future spousal support obligations. Prenuptial agreements can cover assets such as inheritances, property, savings, or other valuable items. Individuals in the following circumstances may want to consider hiring an attorney to draft and execute a Texas premarital agreement:

Couples should avoid underestimating the value of premarital agreements. A prenuptial agreement can benefit everyone when each party retains an attorney to look out for their interests.

What Can Be Included in a Texas Premarital Agreement?

In addition to property and financial considerations, Texas premarital agreements may address changing names upon marriage, financial responsibility for specific expenses, and dispute resolution methods.

Limitations to Texas Premarital Agreements

It is important to note that Texas premarital agreements may only lawfully include issues that are not illegal or contrary to public policy. For example, a Texas premarital agreement cannot contract away the rights of children.

Under Texas law, prenuptial agreements cannot limit one party’s child support responsibility in the event of a divorce. A child’s right to the financial support of each parent is non-negotiable during the child’s minor and non-emancipated state. While a court order may require one spouse to pay child support to the other parent, fundamentally, the right to child support belongs to the child, not the parent.

In the same vein, prenuptial agreements cannot lawfully include child custody arrangements. In the event of a divorce, the family court will decide on child custody by evaluating the child’s best interests. In most cases, the court will give minimal to no consideration to child custody terms in a premarital agreement.

Validity of a Texas Premarital Agreement

Texas adopted the Uniform Premarital Agreement Act (UPPA), which provides the elements that should be present in an enforceable premarital agreement. Premarital agreements in Texas are only valid if the agreement meets the following elements:

Unlike other contractual agreements, premarital agreements do not need to be supported by consideration.

Unenforceable Premarital Agreements

A court may find that a premarital agreement is unenforceable in the following cases:

In assessing unconscionability, the court will evaluate the following:

The terms and enforceability of Texas premarital agreements are often contentious aspects of divorce proceedings. Retaining an experienced Taylor premarital agreement attorney is crucial to avoiding drawn-out prenuptial agreement disputes.

Divorce Without a Prenup in Texas

Texas divorces are often complicated and emotionally fraught because the state follows the community property framework. Under Texas’ community property laws, any property earned or acquired from the marriage date is presumed to be owned by both spouses.

In Texas, separate property includes:

Under this system, community property is any property that is not separate property. For example, one spouse’s wages are considered community property in Texas.

Thus, divorcing without a prenuptial agreement in Texas can significantly affect one party’s financial standing.

Modifying a Premarital Agreement

In Texas, couples can invalidate or modify a premarital agreement. Under Texas Family Code Section 4.005, premarital agreements may only be amended or revoked by written and signed agreement of the parties. Further, modified or revoked agreements are only enforceable upon consideration.

Further, Texas law permits couples to enter into a postnuptial agreement. Postnuptial agreements are legal contracts a married couple creates detailing the distribution of finances, property, and assets in case of a separation or divorce.

Can You Create a Prenuptial Agreement if You Are Already Married?

No, prenuptial agreements can only be created before a couple is married. However, Texas law permits spouses to enter into post-marital agreements, or post-nuptial agreements. Postnuptial agreements are similar to a prenuptial agreement in that they are a contract between spouses that dictates how certain issues should be resolved if the couple ever splits up. For the most part, you can include the same terms that you would in a prenuptial agreement in a postnuptial agreement.

Learn More About Prenuptial Agreements By Speaking with an Experienced Taylor Divorce Attorney

If you are engaged to be married or plan to be in the near future, it’s important to consider whether a prenuptial agreement is right for you. At the Law Office of Jason Wright, we have assembled a team of respected Taylor family law attorneys who have extensive hands-on experience both men and women create effective premarital agreements. With our help, you are not only protecting your interests, but also providing clarity and certainty in your upcoming marriage, which can give both you and your spouse much-need peace of mind. At the Law Offices of Jason Wright, we take a practical approach to every case we handle, listening attentively and using commonsense solutions designed to accomplish their goals with as little uncertainty and hassle as possible. To learn more, and to schedule a free consultation, contact the Law Office of Jason Wright at 512-884-1221 today. You can also reach Attorney Wright through the firm’s online contact form.

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