Key points in postnuptial or marital agreements

Here are some standards from the American Law Institute (ALI) about ‘marital’ (i.e., postnuptial) agreements:

  • A marital agreement is presumed that it was not made under duress if parties were advised to obtain independent legal counsel, and had reasonable opportunity to do so before the agreement’s execution.
  • Full disclosure is required. In order to be enforceable, the parties to a marriage agreement must make full disclosure of assets, income, and also assets or entitlements that a party reasonably expects to realize in the near future.
  • There are “Circuit-breaker” protections if there is “substantial injustice”. For example, an unanticipated change in circumstance between the time when the agreement was executed that has a substantial impact on the parties or their children.
  • A court will also take into account whether the purpose of the agreement was to benefit or protect the interests of third parties (such as the children from a prior relationship).

Read the full ALI excerpt on marital agreements.

Or visit our postnuptial agreement information page.

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