A New York prenuptial or New York premarital agreement (“prenup” for short) is a written contract created by two people before they are married. A prenup typically lists all of the property each person owns (as well as any debts) and specifies what each person’s property rights will be after the marriage.
An agreement made during marriage, rather than before, is known as a “postnuptial,” “post-marital,” or “marital” agreement.
You may need a New York PreMarital Agreement if:
- You want to pass separate property to children from prior marriages.
- You want to clarify financial rights.
- You want to avoid arguments in case of divorce.
- You want to get protection from debts.
Here is a good summary of New York Premarital Agreement Law.
Here is the New York State Law on how to enforce a New York Premarital Agreement and issues to watch out for:
A. A premarital agreement must be in writing and signed by both parties. The agreement is enforceable without consideration.
B. The agreement becomes effective on marriage of the parties.
C. The agreement is not enforceable if the person against whom enforcement is sought proves either of the following:
1. The person did not execute the agreement voluntarily.
2. The agreement was unconscionable when it was executed and before execution of the agreement that person:
(a) Was not provided a fair and reasonable disclosure of the property or financial obligations of the other party.
(b) Did not voluntarily and expressly waive, in writing, any right to disclosure of the property or financial obligations of the other party beyond the disclosure provided.
(c) Did not have, or reasonably could not have had, an adequate knowledge of the property or financial obligations of the other party.
D. If a provision of a premarital agreement modifies or eliminates spousal support and that modification or elimination causes one party to the agreement to be eligible for support under a program of public assistance at the time of separation or marital dissolution, a court, notwithstanding the terms of the agreement, may require the other party to provide support to the extent necessary to avoid that eligibility.
E. An issue of unconscionability of a premarital agreement shall be decided by the court as a matter of law.
F. If a marriage is determined to be void, an agreement that would otherwise have been a premarital agreement is enforceable only to the extent necessary to avoid an inequitable result.
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