Premarital Agreements

What will happen if things do not work out as planned?

Premarital Agreements in California

Newport Beach Family Law Attorneys

On the eve of a marriage, the choice to discuss a premarital agreement, also known as a prenuptial agreement, can be a controversial one. While a couple may be understandably hesitant to consider the possibility of divorce, a well-drafted premarital agreement can help to save each spouse time, money, and headache. In the event that a marriage breaks down, every asset and process decided on beforehand is one that may not need to be fought over in court. At Holstrom, Block & Parke, a Professional Law Corporation, our Newport Beach family law attorneys are backed by 300+ years of combined experience and can help you discover if a prenup is right for your situation.

Enforcing Prenuptial Agreements

California provides rules for both what a prenuptial agreement may contain as well as the conditions under which an agreement is valid. Prenups are designed to deal mainly with financial concerns such as property rights and give spouses the ability to differentiate between separate and community property. They may not be used to decide the terms of either child custody or child support. These areas are placed under a judge’s authority and decided based on the best interest of the child, not parental preference.

While it is highly recommended that you secure legal counsel during the creation of a prenup, it can be a requirement for the inclusion of certain terms such as spousal support agreements or waivers. In these cases, if one party was not represented by an attorney at the time an agreement was created, the terms may be unenforceable. Additionally, a court may set aside terms that it believes to be exceptionally unfair to one spouse at the time of divorce.

California Family Code 1615 states that agreements signed by both spouses will become effective upon marriage unless:

(1)That party did not execute the agreement voluntarily.

(2)The agreement was unconscionable when it was executed and, before execution of the agreement, all of the following applied to that party:

(A) That party was not provided a fair, reasonable, and full disclosure of the property or financial obligations of the other party.

(B) That party did not voluntarily and expressly waive, in writing, any right to disclosure of the property or financial obligations of the other party beyond the disclosure provided.

​(C) That party did not have, or reasonably could not have had, an adequate knowledge of the property or financial obligations of the other party.

Crafting Your Prenuptial Agreement

At Holstrom, Block & Parke, a Professional Law Corporation, we are more than just lawyers; we are legal counselors dedicated to helping each client find the most appropriate pathway to their goals. We know that creating a comprehensive premarital agreement can be complex and our legal team can act as a guide throughout the entirety of the process. Contact our Newport Beach family law attorneys and learn more about how a prenup can be beneficial to both you and your partner.