5 Fast Facts About Prenuptial Agreements in Arizona

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In Arizona, prenuptial agreements are considered by many to be wise pre-marriage investments – especially when it comes time to file taxes and divide up earnings. While most states permit prenups, Arizona stands out as one of the more prenuptial-friendly states. Arizona prenuptial agreements are among the most widely recognized prenups in the United States, and they are considered more valid than prenups that were not signed in Arizona. Although premarital agreements are signed before the wedding vows, legal separation is not necessary for prenups to be valid.

Prenuptial agreements are often thought of as something negative – associated with breakups and divorce. But there are many positives to prenuptial agreements, including that they can help couples clarify their financial goals and protect their interests. If you’re thinking about getting married in Arizona, here are five facts you should know about prenuptial agreements in the state.

It Can Help Protect Your Property And Assets In The Event Of A Divorce

To get an idea of what prenuptial agreements are, one must first consider their concept. It is a contract between two parties that is made either before or at the time of marriage. The prenup will lay down certain terms and conditions for each partner in the event that one of them fails to fulfill their marital duties. It is therefore a pre-marital agreement and will be extremely necessary for the event that your marriage does not work out well.

Prenuptial Agreements Aren’t Just For Wealthy Couples

They can benefit any couple who wants to safeguard their relationship status quo. Prenuptial agreements are not only limited to celebrities or public figures. Normal citizens can also take advantage of prenups to make sure no legal disputes arise in the future when they decide to separate from their partners.

However, prenups cannot help you in such situations where spousal abuse or violence has occurred throughout the course of the marriage; neither will it work against child marriages or underage unions.

Agreements like this allow couples to pre-plan how they will manage their finances and divide assets in the event that a divorce occurs. In some cases, prenups even protect those who have been through a divorce from being responsible for another spouse’s debt.

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Prenuptial Agreements Should Be Notarized

A prenuptial agreement should be notarized so that it can be considered to have legal standing. A prenuptial agreement is only valid if the couple signs the prenup in front of a notary public before getting married.

When signing a prenup, both individuals need to receive their own attorney to review their prenup and advise them accordingly. Prenuptial agreements are legally binding documents that will help protect your assets should you ever decide to file for divorce, so it’s important that you do everything necessary to ensure that they’re prepared for what’s ahead.

Prenuptial Agreements Can Be Voided If They’re Found To Be Unconscionable

No prenuptial agreement is valid if it was entered into because of coercion, fraud, or unconscionable conduct. An unconscionable pre-marital contract is one that appears unjust in the light of the circumstances which exist when the pre-marital contract is executed and which was not reasonably calculated to be fair at the time of execution. If a prenuptial agreement fails, for this reason, it may be challenged by either party on the basis that it was unconscionable at its inception.

Unconscionability can include excessive limitations on post-dissolution spousal support or child custody rights, provisions that are unfavorable to one party even though both parties had counsel present during its negotiation, or a pre-marital agreement that is completely lopsided in favor of one party.

Where a prenuptial agreement is challenged as unconscionable, most prenuptial agreements contain a severability clause. Severability clauses state that if any portion of the prenuptial agreement is deemed invalid or unenforceable, the remaining portions will remain valid and enforceable.

In Arizona, premarital contracts are not required to include a severability clause. If it’s determined that part of a prenuptial agreement is unconscionable, but there’s no severability clause included, then only the unconscionable part will be rendered null and void. The court can choose to ignore this rule when it’s deemed necessary to do so.

According to Arizona prenuptial agreement law, premarital contracts must be in writing, and both parties should have independent legal counsel during their negotiation and execution.

Both Parties Must Disclose All Of Their Assets And Liabilities When Negotiating A Prenuptial Agreement

In Arizona, prenuptial agreements are reviewed by the court. In order to determine whether it is valid and enforceable, a judge will inquire as to whether all assets and liabilities were disclosed before a prenuptial agreement was signed. The failure to fully disclose assets and liabilities could invalidate a prenuptial agreement or have it thrown out of court upon request from an unhappy spouse.

A prenup can be rendered invalid if it leaves an asset off the table because details about the ownership of the asset were not disclosed during negotiations or if one party provides false information about his or her net worth prior to signing.

In Arizona, prenuptial agreements can help protect your property and assets in the event of a divorce. This is true for both wealthy couples who want to keep their wealth separate from any future spouse, as well as people with less money looking to make sure they’re not giving away too much if they get divorced. A prenup should be notarized before you sign it so that there can be no dispute about its validity later on down the line. They’re also good for protecting against fraud or coercion by either party when negotiating terms. Both parties must disclose all of their assets and liabilities when creating a prenup agreement, but this isn’t always easy considering these discussions are usually happening long before one person walks down the aisle.

If you and your prenuptial agreement partner think it’s a good idea to sign one before taking the plunge, make sure you know all of your rights so you can protect yourself and your assets in case things don’t work out as planned.

Are You Looking for a Family Law Attorney You Can Trust?

The attorneys at GillespieShields are well-versed in a variety of different legal fields, ranging from family law to civil suits, employment disputes and probate cases. Although we specialize in several areas of practice, our greatest passion is family law. We believe in giving families peace of mind no matter their situation, and we fight hard to maintain that peace. Whether you’re filing for dissolution or divorce, determining custody of your children, or thinking about adopting children, our experienced attorneys are here to help you every step of the way.  During our private, one-on-one consultation, we’ll take the necessary time to answer all of our questions surrounding Arizona’s family laws, your family’s unique situation, and the possible court outcomes. Contact us today for your consultation!


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