Houston Prenup Lawyer – Avoid Conflict & Protect Your Assets with a Prenuptial Agreement
For the 82,000 people who get divorced every year in Texas, the process is simplified if the divorcing couple has a valid prenuptial agreement in place. The Texas Family Code, Section 4.001, uses the term “Premarital Agreement” and defines it as: “an agreement between prospective spouses made in contemplation of marriage and to be effective on marriage.” The document is often referred to simply as a prenuptial or prenup. There are many reasons why the parties may desire a prenup and, if they do, there are certain requirements that must be met in order for the document to be valid under Texas law.
We know all of the nuances associated with prenups regarding Texas family law. An experienced prenuptial agreement lawyer like Frank Mann can help you with asset division plans in the event of divorce. He can help you protect your own best interests and assets. Call our Houston office to schedule a free consultation. We look forward to drafting a prenuptial agreement to protect you in the event of a divorce.
Reasons to Create a Prenup
Having a prenup in place is essentially an insurance policy against the possibility of divorce. Most people have car insurance, homeowners or renter’s insurance, but hope they never have to use it. In the rare case something happens and there is an accident, they are certainly glad they have the policy. The same is true of a prenup. If you are considering marriage, contact a prenup lawyer to see how you can easily protect your assets and define ownership of valuables before you tie the knot. Although almost everyone could benefit from a prenuptial agreement, there are some people who can benefit more than others from taking the time to prepare one.
Who Benefits from a Prenup?
- People who own property in their own name at the time of the marriage that they want to keep separate. A prenup will avoid the detailed process that can be involved in proving ownership of separate property during a conventional divorce with no prenup.
- People who have children from a previous marriage or relationship and want to preserve assets for inheritance by their own children.
- People who have owned a business for a time prior to the marriage, and who want to maintain ownership of the business and its income in the event of a divorce, can clearly articulate their intentions in the prenup.
- Someone who has substantial net worth at the time of the marriage and wants to protect their own assets in case of a divorce.
- Someone that is going to marry a person with substantial debt like student loans, private loans, or credit card debt prior to the marriage. A prenuptial agreement can define the ownership of debt and protect the person entering into the marriage without debt from being responsible for the other party’s debt.
Divorce is a stressful time, even when both parties agree it is in their best interest. If they decide how to distribute their assets ahead of time, at a time when they feel lovingly toward each other, the process will be less emotionally draining and easier for them both.
Requirements for a Valid and Enforceable Texas Prenup
The Texas Family Code, Section 4.002, requires the prenup to be in writing and signed by both parties. Section 4.003 establishes what may be included in the prenup. Essentially, the parties can agree to anything except for an agreement that would deprive a child the right of support.
Texas Family Code Section 4.003 to 4.006 requires the following:
- Both parties must fully disclose all of their assets, including ones they know they will obtain in the future.
- Current income must be divulged, including any expected increases.
- The prenup was signed voluntarily. Agreements signed the night before, or in advance of the marriage can be deemed involuntary
- The other party must have an attorney
- The provisions must not be against the law.
The agreement can be changed, amended or revoked during the course of the marriage, but only if a written agreement to do so is signed by both parties.
Challenging the Enforceability of a Prenup
According to Texas Family Law Code, Section 4.006, the prenup will not be enforced under the following conditions:
- The party who does not want it enforced proves it was not voluntarily signed.
- All assets and income were not fully disclosed.
- The court determines that enforcing the provisions would be unconscionable.
If both parties were given an opportunity to have the prenup reviewed by their own legal counsel, the more likely it is that the agreement will be enforced. An attorney can help you challenge the validity or enforceability of a prenuptial agreement.
Contact a Prenuptial Agreement Lawyer in Houston Today
Call now to speak with an attorney experienced with prenuptial agreements at the Law Offices of Frank E. Mann, P.C. We will schedule a free consultation with our prenup lawyer and help you protect your assets before they become community property.