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What Cannot Be Included in a Prenuptial Agreement? 

 Posted on September 13, 2023 in Family Law

Joliet Divorce LawyerPrenuptial agreements (prenup) are legal documents that couples enter into before marriage to establish property and financial rights in the event of divorce or death. While these agreements provide flexibility and protection, certain provisions are not enforceable. If you are getting married and are interested in signing a prenup, it is crucial to understand what cannot be included in the agreement to ensure its validity and fairness. If you are interested in creating a prenup, contact an Illinois lawyer to help begin the process of crafting the agreement in a legally binding manner. 

What is Prohibited from Prenups?

Here is what you cannot include in a prenup:

  • Illegal provisions – Any provisions in a prenuptial agreement that violate the law are unenforceable. This includes clauses that encourage illegal activities, promote fraud, or undermine public policy. For example, agreements that attempt to limit child support obligations or waive parental rights will be deemed unenforceable by the court. 

  • Non-financial matters – Prenups primarily focus on financial matters, such as property division, debt division, and spousal support. Matters unrelated to finances, such as custody arrangements or personal behavior clauses, cannot be included in a prenup. These issues are typically addressed separately through child custody agreements or court orders, as the child’s best interests take precedence.

  • Unfair provisions – Provisions that are deemed grossly unfair or one-sided may render the entire prenup unenforceable. Courts may invalidate agreements that leave one spouse destitute or significantly disadvantaged. Therefore, the terms of the agreement must be fair and reasonable at the time of signing. 

  • Lack of a complete disclosure – For a prenup to be valid, both parties must provide a complete financial disclosure. Failing to accurately disclose assets, debts, or income can undermine the agreement’s enforceability. If one party can prove that the other party concealed or misrepresented financial information, the court may set aside the prenuptial agreement. 

  • Consideration of public assistance – Prenuptial agreements cannot include provisions that waive or limit a spouse’s right to public assistance. Individuals have a right to seek government aid if they meet the eligibility criteria, and a prenuptial agreement cannot impede this right.

Contact a Joliet, IL Prenuptial Agreement Lawyer 

While prenups offer couples flexibility and protection, there are limitations on what can be included. Consulting with a knowledgeable family law attorney is essential to ensure your prenup is comprehensive, fair, and legally valid. Contact the experienced Plainfield, IL prenuptial agreement attorneys with Law Offices of Tedone and Morton, P.C. for legal representation in creating your prenup. Call 815-666-1285 for a free consultation.

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