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How can you successfully challenge a prenuptial agreement?

A few weeks ago, we wrote about prenuptial agreements and how the perception of these contracts is changing. It used to be that they were taboo, but now people are recognizing prenups for what they are: critical contracts to a marriage and divorce.

However, there are some perceptions that still linger. For example, many people are under the impression that a prenuptial agreement, once signed, is impregnable and, thus, there is no way for the parties involved in the contract to challenge it. This is simply incorrect. There are plenty of ways to challenge a prenuptial agreement and ultimately alter the course of your divorce. So what circumstances lead to a successful appeal of a prenuptial agreement?

First and foremost, the prenuptial agreement could be considered fraudulent if one of the spouses pressured the other spouse to sign the document, especially if it was done in the immediate build-up to the wedding. Signing a prenuptial agreement under duress makes it likely that the pressured spouse will miss some critical details in the contract.

Fraud can also come into play if one of the spouses lied about his or her assets or other elements integral to the marriage.

Last but not least, it is also possible that upon looking over the prenuptial agreement, a judge may rule that the document is unfair. In other words, the contract is too unbalanced and favors one spouse in such a way that no judge would divide the marital assets and other factors in such a way. In such a case, the judge could alter the way the prenuptial agreement, and the divorce, are handled.

Source: Huffington Post, “When a Prenup Gets Thrown Out,” Stann Givens, July 1, 2014

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Larkin, Ingrassia & Tepermayster, LLP


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