Tuesday, July 02, 2013

Breaking News: New Law in New Jersey Regarding Prenuptial Agreements

The State of New Jersey reformed its Prenuptial Agreement law, strengthening the enforceability of the contracts.  Until this new law was passed, New Jersey had allowed parties to set aside a prenuptial agreement deemed to be unconscionable, both when they were entered into and when they were meant to be enforced.  Accordingly, it had been difficult, if not impossible, to draft a truly enforceable Prenuptial Agreement in New Jersey.

The new law removes the unconscionable provision, thus dramatically changing the enforceability of Prenuptial Agreements in New Jersey.  This law does not apply retroactively so Prenuptial Agreements already in existence will be interpreted under the old statute.

Under the new law, Prenuptial Agreements still require full and fair disclosure as well as various procedural requirements set out in the statute.  Additionally, provisions regarding children are generally modifiable by the court as circumstances with children can change (or the children might not be in existence when the Prenuptial Agreement is drafted).

A poorly drafted Prenuptial Agreement can be more bothersome and expensive than no Prenuptial Agreement at all.  If you believe that you need to protect your assets and income or any other rights associated with an impending marriage, you should consult with an attorney who is familiar with Prenuptial Agreements in the state where you reside.  If anyone tells you that the process is simple or quick, then they do not have a true understanding of the law.


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