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Playa Vista Premarital Agreement Attorney

Divorce is something that many California couples have to go through at some point in their lives. In fact, according to data collected and published by the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS), one in five American couples gets divorced within their first five years of marriage. While going through divorce is never easy, in some cases, it is the right decision for everyone involved.

The possibility of divorce is something that you may want to prepare for, before you get married in the first place. There are things that can make the divorce process easier and more efficient, should it come to that. For some couples, signing a premarital agreement that will control much of their divorce is a prudent choice.

A premarital agreement, also known as a premarital agreement, prenuptial agreement, or a prenup, can prepare and protect your support, property and other interests in the event that your marriage ends in divorce. At the Law Offices of Evan Braunstein, our Playa Vista premarital agreement attorney is trained and experienced in all of the latest aspects of California premarital agreement law. If you are considering signing a premarital agreement, we can help.

How Does a Premarital Agreement Work in California?

In the simplest terms, a premarital agreement is nothing more than a private contract that spouses can enter into before they start their marriage. The point of a premarital agreement is to make the divorce process, in the unfortunate event that there is one, as painless and efficient as possible. More specifically, prenuptial agreements are used to control divorce-related financial matters. Of course, prenups are not considered the most romantic thing in the world; many people have an aversion to them. Yet, many marital professionals do believe that a premarital agreement can be very useful in some cases.

Why Sign a Premarital Agreement?

Entering into a premarital agreement offers many advantages, most notably protection and assurance about what will happen if the marriage ends in divorce. If the marriage ends, litigation over financial issues can be avoided if an agreement is in place. Entering into an agreement before marriage can allow some people to marry who otherwise cannot afford the financial risk of marriage. A premarital agreement can also clarify the responsibility of partners with regard to preexisting debts, which may reduce marital stress and improve the quality of a marriage. For couples where at least one spouse has children from a previous relationship, a premarital agreement can also be useful in the very unfortunate event that either partner passes away. If there are children from a previous marriage, their stake in any property or assets that they stand to inherit can be protected.

Important Elements of Premarital Agreements

The most important elements to a Playa Vista prenuptial agreement are disclosure and independent representation. Disclosure means the full and accurate revelation of all income, assets, debts and opportunities that exist at present and in the foreseeable future. A party must fully understand what property rights are waived for the waiver of those rights to be effective. Independent representation means that with limited exceptions, each party must consult with a separate attorney to review, discuss, and sign off on the agreement. If a court later finds that a premarital agreement was not accompanied by full disclosure and independent representation, it can refuse to enforce the agreement. In such a case, California divorce law (including community property and spousal support) is applied.

The Legal Requirements of California Prenuptial Agreements

To be enforceable under the law, your Playa Vista premarital agreement must conform to certain requirements that have been set forth by the state of California. In the mid 1980s California signed on to the Uniform Premarital Agreement Act (UPAA), a multi-state pact that sets certain standards for all premarital agreements. Under this law, California premarital agreements will automatically become effective from the date of the marriage. Additionally, for these agreements to be enforced, they must meet the following five legal requirements included within the UPAA:

  1. Each party must have had the ability to consent to the agreement for it to be legally valid. This means that premarital agreement will be thrown out of court in they resulted from intentional fraud, duress or mistake.
  2. Full and fair financial disclosures by each party must have made before the agreement was signed, or otherwise the prenup will be declared invalid.
  3. A copy of the agreement must be received by each party at least seven days before it was signed. This is done to ensure that the spouse being presented with the agreement has adequate opportunity to get it to a legal professional for an in-depth review and evaluation.
  4. Married people are legally forbidden from contracting away their right to child support, child custody or child visitation in their prenuptial agreement. If terms related to any of those issues are included in a premarital agreement, they are always unenforceable.
  5. While the right to receive spousal support can be contracted away in a premarital agreement, it can only be done if the party agreeing to do so consulted with a lawyer prior to signing the contract.

What to Do Before Signing a Premarital Agreement

If you are considering signing a prenuptial agreement in Playa Vista, California, you need to ensure the following three things:

  1. The agreement is enforceable under California law;
  2. The agreement has been carefully drafted and is free of any errors; and
  3. Signing the agreement is actually in your best interests.

You should never sign a premarital agreement unless you have first had the document assessed and reviewed by a qualified attorney. Further, if you have been presented with a copy of a premarital agreement by your partner, you need to hire your own attorney to review the proposed arrangement. Do not sign an agreement that is not fair to you. If you are being asked to make substantial concessions within the agreement, your partner should also be required to make some equitable concessions as well. Do not sign away your legal rights.

Contact Our Playa Vista Premarital Agreement Team Today

At the Law Offices of Evan Braunstein, we provide a wide variety of different family law services including premarital agreement drafting, negotiating and review. To set up a free review of your case, please call us today at (424) 352-8939 or email us through our website. Our office is located in the heart of Playa Vista, and we represent clients throughout the Los Angeles metro area.

Evan Braunstein
Phone: (424) 500-2983
Fax: (310) 492-4025

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