New York courts often enforce post-nuptial agreements, or agreements concerning ownership of property after marriage. Like a pre-nuptial agreement, a post-nuptial agreement can sort out issues of property ownership, management of family businesses, and other concerns the couple may have regarding their standing within the marriage.
There are many reasons a couple might not create a prenuptial agreement, but might want to create a postnuptial agreement. In our society, prenuptial agreements are often viewed with suspicion. When family members or friends see them as evidence of “selfishness” or that a marriage won’t “work,” a marrying couple may decide not to seek one – only to discover after the marriage that the clear communication and agreed-upon “ground rules” the agreement creates are “must-haves” in their relationship.
In order for a postnuptial agreement to be valid, it must meet similar requirements as those in a prenuptial agreement. For instance, the postnuptial agreement must be made in writing, so that its terms can be clearly established. The spouses must fully and honestly disclose all their assets to one another, so that issues can be openly discussed, and they must both consider the postnuptial agreement a “fair” one. The agreement must also follow guidelines of common law and decent behavior – for instance, a parent cannot use a pre- or postnuptial agreement to avoid paying child support.
Finally, the postnuptial agreement must be publicly executed by both spouses. Your experienced Long Island postnuptial agreements attorney can help you ensure your agreement addresses your needs, follows the law, and can be enforced if you ever need to do so.