Prenuptial agreements usually aren’t the first thing on your mind when you’re getting married, and they’re certainly less exciting than planning the actual wedding. When talk of a prenup does come up, it’s rarely a pleasant conversation and often a source of discord between couples. After all, who wants to think about what happens if you get divorced when you’re about to get married?
Marital Agreement Attorneys in Mesa Arizona
The good news is that getting a prenuptial agreement doesn’t have to be so hard. With the help of a compassionate, understanding attorney, drafting an agreement can actually be fairly simple.
The same goes for postnuptial agreements. If you neglected to sign a prenuptial agreement before your wedding and now believe that one is necessary, an attorney can help you and your spouse draft and sign a postnuptial agreement that ensures both of your rights and wishes are respected in the case of a divorce down the road.
The key to making it a smooth process in both cases is working with the right attorney, and at JacksonWhite Law, that’s exactly what you’ll find. Our family law team has over 40 years of combined experience helping Arizonans with family law matters like prenups and postnups, and our top priority is to deliver best-in-class customer service to every client.
Mesa Prenuptial Agreement Services
A prenuptial agreement, officially referred to as a premarital agreement in Arizona, is “an agreement between prospective spouses that is made in contemplation of marriage and that is effective on marriage” (ARS 25-201). The agreement must be in writing and signed by both parties, and it takes immediate effect when the spouses are married.
Prenuptial agreements are allowed a pretty broad scope as to what they can cover, though they’re strictly forbidden from effecting a future child support order. According to ARS 25-203, the following topics are fair game in a prenup:
- Property accumulated before the wedding
- Property accumulated after the wedding
- The right to buy, sell, use, transfer, or lease a property interest
- What happens to property if the marriage ends in divorce, separation, or death
- Modification or elimination of alimony (aka spousal support)
- Creating a will or trust to carry out the terms of the agreement
- Ownership and disposition of life insurance death benefits
- Any other matter, including personal rights and obligations, that are not in violation of public policy or which would carry a criminal penalty
In short, a prenuptial agreement can cover just about anything besides child support and unlawful activities. In addition to addressing assets and liabilities, the agreement can even cover things like who gets the pets and what each party’s roles and responsibilities are in the household.
Postnuptial Agreement Services in Mesa
Forget to sign a prenuptial agreement before your wedding? Or perhaps your financial situation has changed significantly since your marriage? Don’t worry, it’s not too late to sign a postnuptial agreement.
Arizona law permits postnuptial agreements, but they’ll need to hold up to additional scrutiny in court. Both parties must be fully informed about the scope of the agreement, especially how it affects their property rights, assets, and liabilities. The terms of the agreement must be fair and equitable, and neither party may be coerced into signing the agreement.
As long as those conditions are met, postnuptial agreements generally abide by the same rules as prenuptial agreements. Any topic is fair game as long as it doesn’t involve unlawful activity or future child support obligations.
Why Work With an Attorney When Filing Your Marital Agreement?
While it’s true that Arizona accepts DIY prenuptial and postnuptial agreements, it’s rarely advisable to draft such an agreement yourself. If your agreement is ever challenged in court (which is almost a guarantee in volatile, contested divorce cases), it’ll need to hold up to intense scrutiny for the judge to enforce any conditions that are contrary to standard practices.
For example, Arizona law normally dictates that assets and liabilities incurred after marriage must be shared 50/50. If your prenuptial agreement says otherwise, you’ll need an airtight agreement to ensure the judge doesn’t throw it out.
Whether you need a simple prenuptial agreement or a complex, multifaceted one, it’s always best to work with an experienced attorney who knows how to structure an agreement that’ll hold up in court. It’s also helpful to have a compassionate mediator who can help you and your future spouse reach an accord if negotiations are necessary.
Our JacksonWhite Mesa Family Law Attorneys
As the senior attorney on the family law team, Tim is able to draw from years of experience in Arizona family law cases when he helps his clients resolve family disputes. In addition to drafting prenuptial and postnuptial agreements, Tim has successfully managed cases in every aspect of family law, including divorce, separation, guardianship, and parental rights.
Like Tim, Jon McAvoy is an experienced family law attorney with an impressive track record of helping clients in Mesa resolve family disputes. Jon specializes in child custody, legal separation, divorce, and paternity issues, and he’s a member of the Arizona State Bar, Family Law section.
Nermana Pehlic is the newest member of the JacksonWhite family law team, joining the firm in 2018. Nermana specializes in premarital agreements, child support, alimony, legal separation, and divorce.
JacksonWhite Family Law Mesa Location
JacksonWhite Law’s main office is located in the heart of Mesa, right next to the historic downtown district and less than one mile from the Mesa Southeast Court Complex.
Address: 40 N. Center St, Mesa, AZ 85201
Phone number: (480) 467 – 4348
Mesa Family Court Location
In Mesa, family court cases take place in the Mesa Southeast Court Complex. You’ll find the court on the northwest corner of Baseline and Mesa Drive, less than one mile from JacksonWhite Law’s Mesa office.
Address: 222 E Javelina Ave, Mesa, AZ 85210
Phone number: (602) 506-1561
Let JacksonWhite Help with Your Prenuptial or Postnuptial Agreement
Prenuptial and postnuptial agreements are most commonly used when one or both spouses has significant personal assets, but that doesn’t always have to be the case. Whether your bank account is measured in hundreds, thousands, or millions, it’s still beneficial to lay out exactly what may happen in the unfortunate event that your marriage ends in separation or divorce.
If you’re contemplating whether a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement is necessary for your marriage, give us a call today to schedule a consultation. Our knowledgeable and compassionate attorneys will listen to your needs, ask questions to better understand your situation, offer guidance on the best course of action, and if you decide that an agreement is necessary, help you draft and sign an agreement that suits your unique needs.
Call the Family Law Team at (480) 467-4348 to discuss your case today.
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