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How To Challenge A Florida Prenuptial Agreement

PrenupRings

These days, more and more couples of all ages are choosing to execute prenuptial agreements, or prenups, when they get married. They may choose to do this for a variety of reasons, from wanting to protect separate property to providing for children from a previous marriage, but regardless of the reasons, the prenup must be enforceable under Florida law. If you believe that your prenup is unenforceable or otherwise merits a challenge, it is generally possible to do that, though the help of an attorney is highly recommended.

What Is Not Enough?

One thing that the average person must keep in mind in trying to upset a prenuptial agreement is that certain reasons you might think would be enough, simply are not. For example, at common law, a prenup could be overturned by simply arguing that it was unconscionable (so unfair or uneven that it would shock the public conscience). However, under current Florida law, simply getting a bad deal is generally not enough to invalidate a prenup – a prenup is a contract, and most contracts cannot be overturned simply because one party was a better negotiator than the other.

A prenup will also usually not be invalidated by cheating or other marital misconduct – this kind of behavior is considered irrelevant to the contract – or by a change in circumstances on the part of one or both spouses. Representation, or lack thereof, also has no bearing on the validity of the agreement. There is a very specific list of criteria that are grounds enough to challenge a prenuptial agreement, and any other potential reason will usually not be sufficient.

The Only Acceptable Criteria

The list of reasons to invalidate a Florida prenuptial agreement essentially boils down to three. They are:

  • One party did not execute the agreement voluntarily – that is, they were forced or pressured into doing so (and ‘force’ or ‘pressure’ need not be physical; it can be emotional, financial, or otherwise);
  • One party did not receive a full picture of the other’s finances, including assets and debts – thus, no real “meeting of the minds” can be said to have taken place, and both parties to a contract must be on the same page, so to speak; and
  • The agreement, or major provisions of the agreement, is unconscionable – that is, its provisions are so grossly unfair that they would shock the conscience of the public. For example, a prenup where the asset division is so one-sided as to render one spouse eligible for public assistance in the event of a divorce is wholly unenforceable.

If you are able to establish any of these to the appropriate evidentiary standard, your prenup has a good chance of being held to be unenforceable, or at least, the relevant provisions will be seen as unenforceable. However, this is not an easy place to get to without experienced help, so it is a good idea to consult an attorney to get the proverbial ball rolling.

Call A Hollywood Prenuptial Agreement Attorney

Prenups can be extremely helpful for many couples, but sometimes, it is all too easy to get in over one’s head. If you have questions about the validity of your prenup, calling a Hollywood family attorney is a good first step toward getting them answered. The Law Offices of Steven A. Mason, P.A. has handled many of these cases, and Attorney Mason may be able to assist you with yours. Call our offices at (954) 963-5900 to speak to an attorney.

Resource:

leg.state.fl.us/Statutes/index.cfm?App_mode=Display_Statute&URL=0000-0099/0061/Sections/0061.079.html

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The Law Offices of Steven A. Mason, P.A., is located in Hollywood, FL and serves clients in and around Dania, Hollywood, Fort Lauderdale, North Miami Beach, Pompano Beach, Miami, Pembroke Pines, Miami Beach, Deerfield Beach, Hallandale, Aventura, Boca Raton, Broward County, Miami-Dade County and Palm Beach County.

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