Prenuptial Agreement Attorneys of San Marcos
Compassionate Prenuptial Agreement Lawyers Dedicated to Your Family’s Best Legal Interests in the Local San Marcos Area.
For many years, Southern California has been able to count on Fischer & Van Thiel, LLP for all their Prenuptial Agreement Law & Legal Services. In addition to our San Marcos Law Firm’s Office, our Legal Services Law Practice Represents many Service Area Clients throughout the local San Diego County, California region.
Prenuptial Agreement Attorneys with Years of Experience
Depending on you and your spouse or soon-to-be-spouse’s circumstances, there may be a need to plan for and protect your assets. Doing so prior to marriage is often extremely important so that messy and frustrating complications do not arise in the future. In order to ensure your finances are in order and assets are protected, you may need a well-written and comprehensive prenuptial agreement.
A strong and clear prenuptial agreement is essential to avoiding legal conflicts if a divorce does, in fact, become necessary. The Vista prenuptial agreement lawyers of Fischer & Van Thiel, LLP, are 100% dedicated to helping individuals draft and complete thorough prenuptial agreements, and can also provide enforcement services if a prenuptial agreement is violated.
Prenuptial agreements are often incorrectly considered to be precursors to divorce. In reality, this arrangement simply serves to keep the best interests of both parties separated in the event that a marriage does end.
For this reason, a couple considering drafting a prenuptial agreement should not do so without proper legal guidance. This ensures that all rules are met and no violations that could nullify the document are committed.
Each future spouse should be represented by individual attorneys. The attorneys will advise the spouses regarding:
- What to include
- Which steps to go through informing the contract
- How to avoid nullifying the contract
In order to form a prenuptial agreement, the couple does not need to be wealthy or own expensive assets.
The document aims to serve the needs of both spouses by building a solid foundation for their future.
The couple’s rights and obligations will be acknowledged in the contract should their union end in divorce.
Prenuptial Agreements Lawyers
Although prenuptial agreements have largely been viewed as a tool for wealthier couples seeking to protect their finances and assets, they are being increasingly used by couples in a variety of financial situations.
This shift is a result of the fact that many couples have discovered the myriad of benefits and uses that a prenuptial agreement can have beyond simply protecting a person’s money.
Drafting or disputing a prenuptial agreement is not an easy task. . As such, many people seek the help of an experienced attorney to make sure they are doing all they can to protect their interests.
If you need help with a prenuptial agreement, our San Marcos prenuptial agreement attorneys of Fischer & Van Thiel, LLP, are prepared to help you. Call us at (760) 757-6854 today to discuss your situation and how we can help.
How a Prenuptial Agreement Can Help
While prenuptial agreements are mainly used to make financial decisions clear ahead of time in case a marriage dissolves, there are many other uses for a prenuptial agreement, including the following:
- Making financial agreements, both during and post-marriage, clearer
- Ensuring that designated separate property goes to children not conceived in the marriage
- Receiving debt protection
If you feel a prenuptial agreement would be beneficial for you or you need help addressing issues regarding an agreement, you need an attorney on your side that is intimately familiar with the many intricacies of prenuptial agreements.
Prenuptial agreements – or prenups, as they are commonly called – can be written to cover virtually any aspect of a marriage.
At Fischer & Van Thiel, LLP, we help our clients draft prenuptial agreements that will fully cover any aspect of a marriage or possible divorce.
Prenuptial agreements can widely vary, but many of them include provisions that cover:
- Spousal Support
- Probate Matters
- Division of Property (including intellectual property)
Prenuptial agreements are often essential to preventing hostile or violent divorce litigation. Without such an agreement, or without a clear one, divorces can become tense and difficult to complete, but with a strong and encompassing prenuptial agreement, you can more easily be legally protected in the event of a divorce.
Divorce litigation can be difficult and time-intensive. A well-constructed prenuptial agreement may be the best way to prevent a potentially hostile proceeding.
It is important that both you and your spouse consider all the important elements of your relationship before entering into a premarital agreement.
Discussing your needs with an experienced and compassionate prenuptial agreement attorney can help you both to gain peace of mind.
Misconceptions of Premarital Agreements
If you are planning on getting married in the near future, remember that you are entering into a legally binding contract. To protect yourself if you ever need to break the contract, by getting divorced, you need a premarital agreement.
A premarital agreement, or sometimes referred to as a prenuptial agreement, is an agreement come to between you and your fiancée that spells out what is each person’s in the event of a divorce.
However, while this seems simple and beneficial enough, there are still many myths about prenuptial agreements.
It Must Cover Everything: Many people believe that if a couple does not cover every aspect of a would-be divorce, then the agreement is void.
However, these agreements must only deal with the most important issues (house, children, savings, etc). The rest can be dealt with if the occasion for divorce ever arises.
Equal Rights: Prenuptial agreements are there to help protect you from a biased court or mediator. Some think that these agreements are designed to only protect the richer spouse, but this is not the case unless you let that happen.
For Everyone: Speaking of the rich, this is not just for them. If everyone designed their own prenuptial agreements, divorces would not be so messy and damaging to the family. Think of it as taking responsibility for future events.
Understanding Premarital Agreements
Premarital agreements, more commonly known as prenuptial agreements, are written contracts between couples allocating what is to become of personal assets and/or support rights if the marriage is to end in divorce.
These agreements are extremely important as they solely determine the distribution of a couple’s property. They should be flexible and address the couple’s present and future needs.
Premarital agreements work similarly to wills. They clearly stipulate what exactly is to become of a married couple’s property upon divorce without having the court decide.
For example, if a couple owns a house prior to a marriage, the agreement will list which spouse will remain owner, or if other arrangements will be made with the home.
The agreement must clearly take into account the various factors that may affect determination, such as:
- If the owner of the property allocates funds to uphold and maintain it, will the community property be eligible for any interest in those efforts?
- What if the non-owner of the property does the aforementioned instead?
- If the owner of the property allocates funds to uphold and maintain the separate property, will the spouse be eligible for reimbursement of those funds used?
- If a loan was taken out to maintain the separate property, will the community property collect interest?
In order to prevent any confusion regarding these scenarios, it is important to address them in the agreement.
Simply acknowledging that the property shall remain the owners will not suffice. It must be addressed in a thoroughly detailed manner.
A premarital agreement also considers the following provisions:
- Premarital debts
- Living expenses
- Expenses for children of former marriages
- Life insurance for one or both spouses
- Payment of taxes (separate and joint earnings)
- Determination of either written or oral amendments
- Determination of property purchased under joint names
- Determination of state laws applying to the agreement
A premarital agreement can be amended at any time due to the high likelihood the couple wishes to change a stipulation at some point in the marriage.
These changes may be a result of the spouses’ changing age, income, family size, etc.
In 2000, California’s Supreme Court upheld In re Marriage of Bonds, which stated that the Uniform Premarital Agreement Act would make premarital agreements much less difficult to enforce.
It also stipulates that both parties, by agreeing, should be fully aware of any apparent unfairness the document may present.
In 2002, SB78 was enacted into California law by the state legislature. The law placed procedural requirements and restrictions on premarital agreements.
These requirements and restrictions include:
- Allowing the party to seek legal counsel for the purpose of advisement prior to agreeing to the stipulations within the agreement.
- Allowing the party to whom the agreement is being presented at least seven calendar days to review and study said agreement before signing. The seven-day window allows the party to seek legal counsel.
- Allowing the party to understand the effects of the agreement which includes any rights or obligations he/she is potentially relinquishing unless waived.
- Allowing the agreement to be presented in the language the party is proficient in to avoid misunderstandings.
- Allowing the party to be fully aware of any and all assets and/or debts through full disclosure. Neglecting to stipulate said assets and/or debts will be at the fault of the party putting forth the agreement.
It is important to remember that premarital agreements are not appropriate for all couples preparing to marry. A large number of young couples with little to no assets and valuable property may find a premarital agreement unnecessary.
However, for those entering a second marriage or are of older age may find an agreement convenient as it avoids lengthy litigation determining what will become of assets.
It is also suggested to form an agreement to prevent community property claims by the other spouse. These agreements tend to be requested by the party whose wealth and property claims outweigh the others.
However, the wealthier party may not wish to disclose the value of their assets or property and may avoid an agreement altogether.
The Interest Of Children From A Former Marriage
Regarding the children from a spouse’s previous marriage, a party may formulate an agreement to ensure their children receive his/her assets rather than allowing the court to determine where such assets are to be distributed.
On the other hand, if a spouse has outstanding debts or tax liabilities at the time of marriage, an agreement can ensure that if divorce should occur, the other spouse will not incur these debts by protecting their estate and property.
The Benefits of Postnuptial Agreements
Postnuptial agreements, like prenups, are viewed negatively by some, who see them as representing a lack of faith in a marriage.
However, these documents provide incredible protection for both parties in a marriage and can be an invaluable document for couples to take advantage of.
Although similar in almost every way to prenups, postnups, as their name indicates, are created after a couple is already married, and specify guidelines to be followed by the spouses regarding things like asset and property division in the event that the marriage ends in divorce.
It’s been estimated that nearly ten percent of all couples planning to marry decide to formulate a prenuptial agreement in order to safeguard their assets should a divorce occur at some point in the future.
This type of agreement is looked down upon by some in society who claim it brings a sense of pessimism that a marriage may not work.
In reality, prenups encourage both trust and cooperation in marriage by providing full disclosure of pre-marital assets and financial details.
Almost everything can be listed in this type of agreement with the exception of provisions for children, such as child support and custody.
Remaining In Control
The greatest benefit of this type of agreement is that it allows a couple to stipulate exactly how they would like their assets to be divided in the event of a divorce.
California is a community property state, and as such, without a prenuptial agreement in place, any income earned during a marriage will be equally divided between the two parties in the event of a divorce.
The length of the marriage or the number of children involved will in no way affect the distribution of assets. If a couple refuses the prenup, they essentially relinquish control of how they would like their assets to be divided.
Fast And Inexpensive
As this document stipulates the distribution of assets and finances upon the dissolution of a marriage, it can prevent lengthy litigation and expensive court costs for the divorcing couple. In essence, the prenup is aimed at preventing the couple from going through a long, contentious divorce.
Not Written In Stone
The largest misconception regarding prenups is that they cannot be modified after their creation.
This is untrue, and modifying the document is possible through amendments. For example, if one spouse provides the main source of income at the beginning of a marriage, but becomes the dependent spouse years later, the couple may amend the agreement to reflect this.
It is highly suggested to review a prenup every few years to make any modifications required.
Although it is not required under California law, each party in a marriage has the option to be represented by individual counsel when formulating a postnuptial agreement and must waive their right to counsel if they don’t want it.
Due to postnups being much more difficult to enforce than prenups, many attorneys tend to apply the standards of the latter to the former.
The benefits of receiving legal counsel when drafting a postnuptial agreement include:
- Complete and trustworthy legal advice in understanding how the postnup will work, and how it benefits each party
- Increased guarantee that the document will be enforceable, as its drafting has been overseen by a legal professional
Legal advice will serve both to benefit the client and to decrease the likelihood of the document being challenged.
Granting Fiduciary Duty
Fiduciary duty requires both spouses to exercise caution when it comes to the interests of the other. Once married, both will owe a fiduciary duty to each.
Since this duty is owed after marriage, the postnup must reflect it, or risk being overturned at a later date.
A husband or wife must be sure to disclose all debts and/or assets to their spouse in order to uphold each other’s fiduciary duty as a sign of good faith.
Get It In Writing
As with any contract, a postnup must be in writing and signed by both spouses. This will avoid any confusion regarding the stipulations.
Also, the agreement should be formulated when both parties are of sound mind. This includes avoiding drafting the prenup during times of anger or resentment.
The contract should reflect what both parties consider to be fair.
Couples should avoid drafting the document without the guidance of an attorney, as well.
US Law Regarding Prenuptial Agreements
Prenuptial agreements, also known as premarital agreements, are becoming much more common in the United States due to the fact that they increase the likelihood of a speedy and affordable divorce process. This type of agreement specifically lists the assets that soon-to-be spouses will keep in the event their marriage ends, without having to engage in a potentially lengthy and contentious legal battle. Prenups are currently recognized in all 50 states but must adhere to the following five guidelines in order to be valid.
They Must Be Written
As with any contract, a prenup must be written. The soon-to-be spouses must both sign the agreement in order to make clear to the court that they understand and agree to the stipulations listed therein. Although oral prenups can be formulated, they are generally not recognized in most American jurisdictions.
They Must Be Formed Voluntarily
Not unlike a will being formulated and signed voluntarily by a testator of sound mind, a prenup must be created in a similar manner. These agreements are very sensitive when it comes to the agreed participation of both parties and can become null if it is proven that one or both parties were forced into said agreement.
They Must Include Full Disclosure By Both Parties
In order for the agreement to be valid, both parties must include all available information regarding the assets listed therein. The same goes for any liabilities or income. Proof of such information must be included in the agreement.
They Cannot Be Unconscionable
If a prenup has been proven to significantly favor one party over the other, then it may become invalidated. For example, an agreement that states that one spouse will receive no property, alimony, or other assets in the event of a divorce is likely to be found unconscionable.
They Must Be Formulated By The Parties Themselves
A prenup must be formulated by the future spouses themselves, not by any other party. Although it is legal to request the services of an attorney who is knowledgeable in the formulation of such documents, the stipulations themselves must be made by the two parties whose interests the contract reflects. The two must then sign the document before a notary public.
Furthermore, the prenup may include a “sunset provision”. This type of provision will nullify the agreement after a specific date. The same may happen in the event of the birth of a child. However, the couple may renew the document if they so wish.
Below are articles covering prenuptial agreements that you may find useful.
- Avoid Nullifying Your Prenup, Avoid These Four Mistakes
- Understanding Premarital Agreements
- U.S. Law Regarding Prenuptials
- Become Familiar With The Benefits Of Prenuptial Agreements
- Become Familiar With The Benefits Of Postnuptial Agreements
- What Is Collaborative Divorce?
- What Is Annulment?
- What Do You Need In A divorce lawyer?
- No-Fault Divorce
- Misconceptions Of Premarital Agreements
We understand there are a few moments that can bring more joy than having a new child join your family and at Fischer & Van Thiel, we are committed to helping parents-to-be throughout the entire Prenuptial Legal Process.
Difficulties that can arise when dealing with the complexities surrounding Prenuptial Law, ensuring all the paperwork is completed promptly, filed successfully, and sensitive family situations, and possibly other legal matters are mitigated swiftly.
This is why we have dedicated our Law Firm’s Legal Services Team to providing experienced, professional, and caring Prenuptial Law Representation to each client under our advisement.
Mitigating Family Law Complications From the Premarital Process
We know that marriage is an emotional endeavor and sometimes other complicated family matters can detract from the positive marital experience, so we want to avoid any issues that could have long term effects on you and your loved ones.
Rest assured, that we are prepared whether your case includes other family law situations like an annulment, legal separation, divorce, guardianship, a child custody battle, or pursuing child support, we are prepared and have the time tested experience to assist you with these conflicts, as well.
Our team of Family Law Legal Professionals consistently obtain favorable solutions for our clients developing effective legal arbitration, mediation, and litigation strategies who are struggling with personal and/or marital disputes.
We use our expansive understanding of the Local Court’s Legal Procedures and California State Laws to tailor a plan specific Legal Strategy to the best interest of your family’s unique needs.
California Family Law Practice Area Services
One of the most important aspects to consider when hiring a Prenuptial Agreement Attorney is how proactive they are when it comes to representing your case.
Your personally dedicated San Marcos Prenuptial Agreement Lawyer will take preemptive measures to understand your legal situation and all the unique circumstances into consideration to reach the best possible outcome for you and your family.
Our aggressive family case law litigation tactics have proven to be successful year after year through Mediation and in the courtroom resulting in many beneficial resolutions and settlements for our clients.
Family Law Legal Cases We Routinely Handle Involving:
Divorce Law: Including Annulments, Contested, and Uncontested Divorces
Military Divorce Attorney: Experienced with uniques situations of Military Relationships
Mediation: Mediation encourages divorcing spouses to cooperate and avoid trial costs
Child Custody: Including Visitation, Negotiations, Modifications & Enforcement Actions
Child Support: Including Monitary Negotiations, Modifications & Enforcement Actions
Legal Guardianship: Application Preparation, Fitness Assessment, Legal Representation
Adoption: Including Step-Parent, Agency, Private, and International Adoptions
Prenuptial Agreement: We can help you draft and enforce favorable agreements
Paternity: Actions for those seeking custody rights and support payments
Legal Separation Agreement: Traditional and Same-Sex Marriages
Spousal Support (Alimony): Agreements for Spousal Support or Maintenance
Domestic Violence: Including representation for Abuse and those Accused of Abuse
Civil Harassment: We can help you seek a Civil Restraining & Enforcement Orders
Juvenile Court: Including guardianship, juvenile delinquency, and dependency matters
Marital Property Division: Representation as you divide property during divorce
Estate Planning: Including wills and probate
Providing Up-To-Date Legal Advice on Prenuptial Law Issues
Our firm focuses exclusively on matters that relate to Prenuptial Family law. Concentrating on this practice area allows us to remain current on California’s Prenuptial Agreement Legal Codes. As a result, we are able to provide cutting-edge legal advice for a range of unique personal legal concerns.
Fischer & Van Thiel, LLP has the Best Divorce & Family Law Attorneys in the Local San Marcos Area who only provide Best Practice Domestic Violence Law Services with affordable fees.
Our "Family First" Focused Lawyers provide proactive legal solutions that safeguard your current legal situation helping ensure we mitigate future legal issues proactively for you.
We believe it is always best to try to mediate conflicts to help you to avoid courtroom litigation and the fees that accompany this form of dispute resolution, if possible.
Fischer & Van Thiel, LLP Family Law Firm Customer Reviews:
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Child Custody Legal Services
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Looking for the Best Family Law Attorneys in San Marcos? Lawyers You Can Trust with Your Family's Best Interests? Perfect! You Found Us.
We are a Compassionate Team of Family Law Attorneys in San Marcos and we are here to help you and your family through the difficult legal situations. Our Caring Family Law Divorce Law Staff is ready for your call and your complimentary consult. Don't Wait, We can Help. Call (760) 757-6854 Today.