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Premarital Agreements and Enforcement

Premarital agreements are increasingly common as men and women marry at a later age; after having children; after building considerable personal assets; or after having inherited or anticipate inheriting family wealth.

When a client comes of the Law Offices of Ellen B. Lubell to draft a premarital agreement, we listen closely so that we have a deep understanding of the goals of the couple. The drafting of the initial agreement must be specific enough to meet each client's goals—for example, preservation of family interests in case of divorce, or the passing upon death of assets to children from an earlier marriage—but flexible enough to stand the test of time and changing family circumstances.

The drafting of a premarital agreement is an art form that acknowledges present commitments and ensures family continuity without damaging the dreams of a new relationship.

Enforcement of a premarital agreement

Prenuptial agreements have been in use for many years, but their enforceability in court has not been consistent. What may have seemed a reasonable settlement at the beginning of a marriage can be viewed as "unconscionable" at the time of divorce if a couple has been married in excess of fifteen years or their assets have grown a hundred-fold. Or, if the agreement was patently unreasonable, was coerced, or if one spouse was not represented by a lawyer, the agreement may not be enforceable at all.

The issues presumably settled in a premarital agreement may, unfortunately, still end up in court. When this happens, it is the role of attorney Ellen Lubell and her team of legal professionals to assist you in pressing for a fair and equitable resolution, whether that calls for the enforcement or invalidation of a premarital agreement.