Prenuptial Agreements

Family Law is more than divorce. Veronique Liem can prepare, review and help negotiate your prenuptial agreement.

Though they may be perceived as unromantic and be emotionally demanding, prenuptial agreements can strengthen a couple’s future ability to negotiate its financial affairs. Those agreements can promote openness, honesty and clarity.  They can shed light on the parties’ ability to be fair to each other and reach compromises.  They can help prevent future conflicts related to financial matters.

Prenuptial agreements are entered into before marriage. They are designed to anticipate how assets will be allocated in the event of divorce and often involve waivers of rights. They are typically sought when one or both parties already have children or significant assets. Planning for them well before marriage is desirable as they often involve negotiations that can take several weeks or longer. They are enforceable in Michigan if they were not obtained fraudulently or unconscionably, or through duress, misrepresentations or insufficient disclosure of material facts.  A court may also consider if circumstances have changed so much, and unexpectedly so, as to make enforcement of a prenuptial agreement unconscionable.  Such agreements must be carefully drafted, with full disclosure of each party’s financial situation.  Negotiations of the agreement with both parties represented by legal counsel are desirable.   There should be sufficient time to negotiate before the wedding date.

Issues often considered in a prenuptial agreement include:
  • Identification and import of separate versus marital assets;
  • Inheritances and gifts;
  • Estate planning issues; and
  • Impact of short versus long marriages.

Prenuptial agreements are more likely to be enforced if there are not unconscionable, if there has been full disclosure of assets and debt, no undue pressure and sufficient time before marriage for both spouses to obtain legal counsel, assess and often negotiate the terms of the final agreement.

Post-nuptial agreements are agreements between spouses entered during marriage. They present challenging issues with regard to their enforcement. Veronique can assist in assessing those.

Find out more about Veronique Liem’s experience and credentials or contact us to schedule an appointment.