Many couples, when they say “I do,” expect their marriage to last forever. Even so, those same couples opt to create a prenuptial agreement, or an agreement that specifies exactly how marital property is to be divided in the event of a divorce in Texas. Prenuptial agreements also serve to assist couples with issues that typically arise during divorce, such as spousal support and alimony. Premarital contracts are entered into prior to marriage, and are valid all throughout the duration of marriage. However, each party has the power to change the prenuptial agreement throughout the marriage and as situations change, so long as the other party gives his or her written consent, as well.
At the Law Offices of Udeshi Clark and Associates, our Dallas divorce attorneys encourage Texas prenuptial agreements for no other reason than that they protect an individual and his or her assets in the event of a divorce. If you are engaged to be married, it may be in your and your spouse’s best interests to consult with a family law attorney to figure out whether or not you need a prenuptial agreement. If you do, we can help you draft an agreement that will satisfy both parties’ wishes for marriage and divorce.
Is a Prenuptial Agreement Necessary?
Many couples are unsure of whether or not they need a prenuptial agreement in Texas. Others feel that asking their significant other to sign a prenuptial agreement is insulting, as it implies that the marriage may end. However you may feel about prenuptial agreements, our Texas family law attorneys encourage all couples to consider creating a legally binding prenuptial agreement. Unfortunately, no one can predict the future, and the best safeguard one has against it is to be prepared. Prenuptial agreements simply allow couples to be prepared in the event of a divorce, and to maintain some semblance of control during an otherwise chaotic time.
For couples that are hesitant to create a premarital contract, we ask them to consider what would happen if they did not have a premarital contract in place. According to the Texas Family Code, Chapter 3, Texas is a community property state, meaning that all marital assets will be subject to “just and right division.” The law presumes that all marital property is community property until one or both parties provides convincing evidence proving otherwise. Unfortunately, in Texas, all income, salary-related benefits, and retirement plans are considered community property, and will be divvied up as such. For the higher earning spouse, this may be a point of contention. Prenuptial agreements eliminate that point of contention by simply allowing each spouse to claim their respective incomes as “separate property” throughout the marriage.
Prenuptial agreements also serve to protect family inheritances from leaving the bloodline, to pass on certain assets to just your children, or even to safeguard your assets from creditors.
What a Prenuptial Agreement Cannot Do
While a Texas prenuptial agreement may be able to safeguard your assets and thereby eliminate the headache of property division in divorce, there are many things that a prenuptial agreement cannot do. A prenuptial agreement cannot:
- Waive a future spouse’s benefits;
- Contain provisions that violate public policy or a statute imposing criminal penalties;
- Be used to defraud creditors;
- Be used to waive one spouse’s right to child support.
Consult a Dallas, Texas Prenuptial Agreement Lawyer
At the Law Offices of Udeshi Clark and Associates, we provide our clients with the means necessary to make the transition from marriage to divorce as smooth as possible. One of those tools is a Texas prenuptial agreement. If you and your spouse have significant assets that you want to protect in the event of a divorce, a prenuptial agreement may be for you. To consult a Dallas family law attorney regarding a prenuptial agreement, contact our law firm today at (469) 914-5564 to schedule your initial consultation today.