Like any agreement, you can modify a prenuptial agreement by producing another composed contract that is signed by both parties to the initial agreement. However, a prenuptial agreement isn’t simply any agreement, and postnuptial agreements typically deal with stiffer enforcement difficulties than prenuptial agreements perform in the event of a divorce– and some states do not acknowledge the validity of postnuptial arrangements at all.
Part 1. Evaluating Your Prenuptial Contract
1. Go over the arrangement with your spouse. Review each provision in your prenuptial agreement to decide which arrangements you and your partner want to customize. A prenuptial or postnuptial contract is just legitimate after complete disclosure from both you and your partner concerning your income, possessions, debts, and liabilities.
- If any of this details has actually altered given that you signed the prenup, share it freely. Do not assume that your partner understands.
2. Decide whether you wish to revise or terminate the prenuptial agreement. If you intend to alter a substantial part of the prenuptial arrangement, it might make more sense to end it and go back to square one.   Bear in mind that if you revoke your prenuptial contract, property division will follow the state laws governing marital property in the event you and your spouse different or end the marriage.
- While an agreement between partners after a marriage that revokes a prenuptial arrangement usually is considered legitimate, a postnuptial contract that modifies the prenup will be examined more carefully by judges.
- If you choose to customize your prenuptial contract, any arrangements of the prenup not dealt with in the composed postnuptial agreement will still be in result to the exact same degree.
3. Inspect your state law. Although all states permit you to withdraw a prenuptial contract, some do not allow you to customize the arrangement after marriage, and a postnuptial arrangement will have restricted or no result. Some states do not formally acknowledge the legal validity of postnuptial contracts. In these states, you can just end your prenup but you may not be able to develop another contract.
- For example, Ohio has a statute that clearly restricts postnuptial arrangements. In states that don’t acknowledge postnuptial contracts, partners may only make arrangements that change their legal relationship concerning home ownership in the context of a legal separation.
- Even in states that do recognize postnuptial contracts, judges assess these arrangements more strictly since under the law spouses have a higher duty to each other after they are married than they did before.
Part 2. Preparing Your Postnuptial Agreement
1. Consider employing a lawyer. Especially if a lawyer drafted the original prenuptial contract, you most likely want a lawyer to draft your arrangement modifying it. You cannot have one attorney who recommends both you and your spouse. Different interests are at stake, so each of you should have your very own lawyer.
- If your spouse has actually hired an attorney to draft the contract, you need to hire a lawyer to examine the contract for you and recommend you of your interests in signing it.
- If you’re worried about the cost of working with two attorneys, you might want to think about developing your agreement through mediation, which can be less costly. Working with a conciliator enables you and your spouse to create the arrangements of the arrangement yourself, ensuring that they state what you want and you understand them.
2. Look for forms or design templates. You might be able to discover samples online that you can use as overviews of create your postnuptial agreement. Remember that any sample you find online isn’t really drafted by a lawyer, and may not meet the legal requirements for your state.
- Even if you’re thinking of preparing the contract yourself, you may want to have a lawyer look over it just to make sure it fulfills your state’s requirements for legal validity.
3. Draft the initial recitals. In lots of ways the opening statements of your postnuptial arrangement will mirror those found in your prenuptial agreement. Normally, your recitals will state who you are, when and where you were married, and the function of the arrangement.
- For example, you may write: “Whereas, Husband and Wife were wed on the 7th of July, 2007, under the laws of the State of California.”
- If the function of your postnuptial arrangement is to modify your prenuptial arrangement, you likewise should mention that and refer to the prenuptial agreement and the date it was signed.
4. Write out the agreed modifications. The next areas of your postnuptial contract will particularly state the changes you want to make to your prenuptial contract. Organize these sections the same way they were arranged in your prenuptial agreement. You also might wish to refer to the sections of the prenup particularly.
- For example, you may compose: “The separate home area of the prenuptial arrangement is modified with regard to your home situated at 123 Lovers Lane. Although Wife purchased this building prior to the marital relationship, Couple concur that each have joint ownership in this house, and it may not be gotten rid of without shared approval.”
5. Close the contract. The last portion of your postnuptial arrangement, which may be similar to those in your prenuptial contract, consists of language required to enforce the arrangement and make it lawfully binding. The closing provisions of the contract normally contain language called “boilerplate” due to the fact that it is consisted of in all agreements. Although it might seem like a lot of legalese, it is essential to make the contract lawfully legitimate.
- For instance, you generally require clauses that specify the arrangement is the whole arrangement between you and your spouse, and a stipulation dealing with severability. What that provision indicates is that if a court chooses that one part of your agreement is not lawfully enforceable, it can be eliminated from the agreement without invalidating any of the other parts of the contract.
- You likewise need to state which state’s laws govern the arrangement.
Part 3. Performing Your Postnuptial Contract
1. Read over the final arrangement. You ought to make sure you comprehend the postnuptial agreement and how it modifies the prenuptial contract prior to you sign it. A court might proclaim the agreement not lawfully legitimate if you didn’t have sufficient time to read it prior to you signed it. However, most of the times, you cannot leave an otherwise legitimate agreement by declaring you didn’t read it.
- If there are any terms you don’t understand or provisions that don’t appear to state exactly what you comprehended the contract to be, speak with an attorney.
- Keep in mind that you can continue to work out regarding the phrasing of a contract prior to you sign it, but it will be too late to change anything after you sign it– unless you wish to go through the whole procedure of producing a new written adjustment again.
2. Sign the arrangement. Your arrangement is not legitimately valid unless signed by both you and your spouse. Some states require postnuptial agreements to be signed prior to a notary and other witnesses. Check your state’s law prior to you sign your agreement to make sure you’re doing it correctly, otherwise your agreement will not be acknowledged by the courts.
- Usually, if you utilize the same signing procedure you used for your original prenup, that will suffice.
- The function of witnesses is to validate that both spouses are of sound mind and neither has actually been persuaded into signing the arrangement against his/her will. Ensure you choose a witness who could possibly be offered to testify to these truths in a law court.
3. Make copies for your records. You will require copies for your own records as well as copies to file or tape along with the prenuptial arrangement.  Some states need pre- or post-nuptial agreements to be filed with the court or with the county clerk, especially if they deal with the ownership of real property.
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