Learning More About Texas Premarital Agreements


How do I get a prenuptial agreement? If I’m already married, can I still enter into a valid Texas premarital agreement? And what does it take to void a premarital agreement in Texas when a couple decides to divorce? Texas family lawyers often receive various questions about premarital agreements in Texas, often called prenuptial agreements. What are some of the most commonly asked questions? We’ll discuss them with you today.
Texas Law and Premarital Agreements
Under Texas’s Uniform Premarital Agreement Act, a premarital agreement is defined as “an agreement between prospective spouses made in contemplation of marriage and to be effective on marriage.” Soon-to-be spouses can contract about many different things, including but not limited to:
The parties’ rights with regard to specific property;
Rights to sell, buy, use, dispose of, and control specific property;
Disposition of property in the event of a separation, divorce, or death; and
Spousal support.
The law also allows the parties to contract about many other issues that may arise in the marriage or in the event of divorce, as long as the parties’ agreement doesn’t violate public policy or the law. So what types of questions tend to arise when couples are considering premarital agreements?
How Do I Get a Premarital Agreement?
This process can begin in different ways, but it’s important for both of the parties involved to discuss what they’d like to see in a prenuptial agreement and to make a list of the property and other issues that they’re going to include in the contract. It’s a good idea to start thinking about the terms of a prenup well in advance of your wedding—at least a few months out from the date on which you’re planning to be married.
Then, it will be important for both parties to hire an experienced Texas family lawyer to draft the premarital agreement. You should know that both parties will need to hire their own attorney. In short, one attorney cannot represent both spouses as they draft and sign a premarital agreement in Texas. The prenup can go through many different drafts before the parties agree to its terms, but once both parties do agree, they’ll sign the contract, thereby making it official.
My Husband and I Want to Have a Premarital Agreement—Are We Too Late?
In short, a premarital agreement is precisely what it says it is: an agreement that happens before the marriage. However, if you and your spouse want to have a formal contract that outlines your rights and responsibilities with regard to certain property, you can still enter into a contract together. Under Texas Law, you can enter into an agreement that stipulates the “partition or exchange of community property.” A Dallas family lawyer can talk with you about this type of agreement today.
How Can I Void My Premarital Agreement?
According to a recent discussion in Texas Lawyer, premarital agreements are very difficult to void in Texas. While spouses can agree at any time to amend or revoke their prenup as long as both parties agree, a premarital agreement will only be deemed unenforceable in three general types of situations:
One of the parties didn’t voluntarily sign the agreement;
The agreement itself was unconscionable; or
The marriage itself—for which the prenup applied—is determined to be void.
Do you have questions about Texas premarital agreements? Contact one of the experienced attorneys at Orsinger, Nelson, Downing, and Anderson, LLP today.