Three Ways to Invalidate a Prenuptial Agreement

When you hear about celebrity prenuptial agreements and how they are supposedly “iron clad” agreements, you may wonder if any prenuptial agreement can be invalidated in the course of a divorce. Indeed, part of the mystique behind prenups is that they are impenetrable agreements that can possibly leave a spouse with nothing after a divorce. However, it is always the truth that breaks the mystique, and the truth is that a prenup can be defeated under certain circumstances, regardless of how “iron clad” it may be.

This post will highlight a few of them:

1. An agreement signed under duress – A prenuptial agreement, like any other contract, must be entered into knowingly and willingly. This means that both parties must sign the agreement without the type of trepidation that would have them think twice about entering into it. If a prenup is found to be signed under duress, it could be invalidated in family court.

2. An agreement signed without full disclosure of assets – Another prerequisite for prenups is that both parties must disclose all of their assets so that each party has a reasonable understanding of the other’s financial position. If a person fails to disclose his or assets, or fraudulently discloses their assets, the prenuptial agreement could be set aside.

3. An agreement signed without the benefit of consulting legal counsel – Both parties must have the ability to consult with the attorney of their choice prior to signing the agreement. If a party is not able to consult with their lawyer, or is advised that there is not enough time to do so, the prenup could be thrown out.

If you have additional questions about prenuptial agreements, an experienced family law attorney can advise you.