What Can Invalidate Premarital Agreements in Arizona?
Many people are turning to prenuptial agreements today, not just the wealthy. A prenuptial agreement can be an effective way to protect children from a previous relationship, a family business, and separate property. It can also avoid default rules that may be adverse to a spouse’s interests. However, a prenuptial agreement that does not meet the necessary requirements may not be valid or may not be enforced by a court. What can invalidate premarital agreements in Arizona? Some reasons include:
A judge can set aside a prenuptial agreement if it was entered into under duress. If a party to a Prenuptial Agreement sets forth adequate cause to prove that they entered into the agreement only because of some undue influence or pressure, the agreement could be invalidated. One critical factor to remember about prenuptial agreements: A prenuptial agreement is only valid if signed voluntarily.
Lack of Accurate Financial Disclosures
Asset and debt disclosures should be accurate so that the parties know what they are negotiating about. Not having financial disclosures will not automatically invalidate a prenuptial agreement. However, a full disclosure must be waived in writing. If the prenuptial agreement is too one-sided and disclosures were not provided, the prenuptial agreement may be invalidated.
Elimination of Spousal Support
While an Arizona prenuptial agreement can waive spousal support, a provision of this nature can invalidate a prenuptial agreement at least as to this provision. This can occur when the lack of spousal support will make the spouse who does not receive the support eligible for public assistance as the only means by which the spouse can be financially supported.
However, a spousal support agreement encapsulated in the prenuptial agreement can establish its own objective standards regarding how much spousal support should be paid, such as the length of the marriage and the parties’ respective incomes.
Other Unconscionable Terms
If a prenuptial agreement tries to interfere with child custody or child support, the court will not look favorably on the agreement and may not enforce it.
Lack of Legal Representation
While a prenuptial agreement can be valid even when a lawyer is not involved on both sides, having an experienced family law attorney from institutions like Udall Shumway prepare a prenuptial agreement can help avoid mistakes. It is best for both spouses to have their own legal counsel who help negotiate the terms of the agreement. Having your own legal counsel can ensure that the negotiations are made in a balanced manner and that the agreement is fair.
This blog should be used for informational purposes only. It does not create an attorney-client relationship with any reader and should not be construed as legal advice. If you need legal advice regarding What Can Invalidate Premarital Agreements, or other family law issues, please feel free to contact Lindsay A.M. Olivarez at 480.461.5300, log on to udallshumway.com, or contact an attorney in your area. Udall Shumway PLC is located in Mesa, Arizona and is a full service law firm. We assist Individuals, families, businesses, schools and municipalities in Mesa and the Phoenix/East Valley.