Contested issues are the most common causes for delays in finalizing a divorce. There is no doubt that by the time a couple has endured the journey of recognizing it is time to end a marriage they are hoping for a legal process that is not excruciatingly lengthy. The most common contested issues are:
- Child custody
- Child support
- Division of assets
Three out of the four most common causes of delay are rooted in money and assets. Is there a way to communicate more effectively and resolve these issues without dragging things out so long in court? The most effective method to avoid arguing over money in a divorce is to have a prenuptial agreement in place
Massachusetts Prenuptial Agreements
A prenuptial agreement is a contract entered into before a couple marries. Ideally such a contract would outline the obligations of each party and determine exactly how assets are divided and what financial support is provided in the event of a divorce. Although a prenuptial agreement can go a long way to prevent delays in finalizing a divorce, a new principle commonly called the “second look” test could throw divorcing couples a curve ball.
How To Pass The “Second Look” Test
To avoid a delay during divorce proceedings due to an invalidated prenuptial agreement, make sure your agreement can stand up to a second look. If circumstances have significantly changed since the date that an original prenuptial agreement was created, a judge could believe it to be unconscionable to award property and assets as the contract outlines. New purchases of property and assets, adoption of children in addition to biological children, changes of employment directly related to dependent children, the development of a chronic illness, can all affect the terms of a prenuptial agreement. In such cases, even in a marriage that is considered sound and healthy, it may be wise to update a prenuptial agreement to reflect new circumstances.
No one knows what the future holds. A solid prenuptial agreement can facilitate smoother divorce proceedings. Trust such an important contract, or the update of an existing one, in the hands of qualified family law professionals.