Prenups are Necessary Because Common Law Marriage in Florida Doesn’t Exist – Moreover, Prenuptial Agreements Need More Protection than a Florida Prenuptial Agreement Form Provides
The basic message of this post is that if you’re smart, you’ll sign a premarital agreement.
Boca Raton Divorce Lawyer Begins the Conversation by Providing the Lowdown on Common Law Marriage in Florida
In the good old days, a common law marriage in Florida was when a couple lived together for a period of time. However, living together wasn’t enough to validate a common law marriage in Florida. Additionally, the couple held themselves out to friends, family and the community as being married. The only thing that set apart couples who enjoyed common law marriage in Florida was that the parties never went through a formal ceremony or got a marriage license.
Is There still Common Law Marriage in Florida? Or Can Prenuptial Agreements Contain a Provision that Allows for Common Law Marriage in Florida?
No. This is why prenups are so important. Consequently, this is also why a Florida prenup agreement form doesn’t cut it. Common law marriage in Florida was done away with in 1968. This does not invalidate a common law marriage entered into after this date in another state that recognizes it as a valid marriage. This means that although there is no Florida common law, the state will recognize common law marriages entered into in a state that does recognize this type of marriage divorce. While it’s not a legal agreement in Florida on it’s face, there is a loophole.
The Importance Of Prenups and, More Specifically, a Valid Premarital Agreement: Why You Need More Protection than what’s Provided By a Florida Prenuptial Agreement Form
Life is good. Okay, good may be pushing it. Still, you can’t help holding your head high with a firm smile on your face as you make the announcement to your closest friends. “Everything’s been settled. I kept telling you to stop doubting we could enter into a friendly premarital agreement!” You clink each of their champagne glasses and take a long, sweet sip. “We’re different from you guys or the stories you’ve heard. We had a great run through the process at the lawyer’s office and still care about each other! I don’t want to use the word enlightened but I can’t think of a better word.”
Boca Raton Divorce Lawyer Emphasizes that Prenuptial Agreements are Worth a Second Look
Before you can put your glass down, your best friend pokes you hard in the ribs. What exactly are the terms of this friendly premarital agreement? You swallow hard. You’ve been fighting to keep the whole marriage prenuptial issue on the back burner. Four pairs of eyes filled with doubt are staring back at you. And you couldn’t help noticing your friend used air quotes when she said friendly. You hate air quotes.
A pool of sweat starts to form on your upper lip. You promised yourself you wouldn’t give details about what your agreements states. It’s nobody’s business who kept the Heat tickets and how much dough you’d have to fork over to “Vanessa Bryant” your former soul mate.
Questions start swirling through your head. What if you made a bad deal? Or, worse, signed away rights you didn’t even know you had? Two shots of Patron later, your Zen-like composure has faded and it’s about to get real.
Maybe It’s Time to Discuss Prenups With a Divorce Lawyer?
Consulting with a lawyer practicing divorce on the validity of signed premarital agreement is like a client calling Jiminy Cricket from a jail cell after robbing his grandmother. In conclusion, a horrible idea.
Prenuptial Agreements are just like any other contract. While there are ways to set them aside, getting there is no easy task. It’s true that contracts that are a result of duress or coercion aren’t valid. Consequently, it’s usually not enough to show that the person challenging the asset agreement was stressed or felt pressured to sign. For example, people think prenups are the product of duress if a party threatens that the wedding won’t go forward if a party doesn’t sign. Sorry Charlie, no dice. Courts have held there is nothing improper about this type of premarital agreement. Even minutes before he or she walks down the aisle.
What Information Should We Exchange Before I Sign a Florida Prenuptial Agreement?
- Fair market value of all real property owned by each individually, in trust, or in partnership with other individuals
- All stocks /bonds owned by each individually, in trust, or in partnership with other individuals
- Pension plans, profit sharing plans, IRAs, 401ks and deferred compensation plans in which each has an individual or beneficial interest
- All bank accounts, money market accounts, certificates of deposit and other liquid or non-liquid intangible assets owned by each individually or in trust
- All life insurance owned, including face value and present cash value
- Individual accumulation of credit card points, frequent flier miles, and any season tickets you may hold
- Business interests including corporate tax returns, financial statements, loan agreements, business plans, business valuations that have been prepared for any reason
- Any patents, trandemarks, copyrights, royalties, etc.
- All trusts for which you or he are beneficiaries
- Any estate planning documents.
- All personal separate property. Each property separately listed for the divorce family.
- The values of each item of separable property are listed. This includes the date of valuation and basis for valuation.
- Full description of each liability, the creditor to whom the liability is owed, the balance owed, the final date due of said liability, and monthly payments.
Palm Beach Divorce Lawyer Explains How to Protect Yourself with Prenuptial Agreements Now that You Know Common Law Marriage in Florida is No Longer Valid
A Florida premarital agreement becomes effective upon marriage of the parties. After marriage, prenups may be amended, revoked, or abandoned only by a written agreement signed by the spouses. The amended agreement prenuptial, revocation, or abandonment is enforceable without consideration.
A premarital agreement isn’t valid if the party against whom enforcement is sought proves certain things about the agreements form:
- That the party didn’t execute the prenup marriage voluntarily.
- The agreement was the product of fraud, duress, coercion, or overreaching.
- The premarital agreement was unconscionable when it was executed and, before execution of the agreement, that party:
- Wasn’t provided a fair and reasonable disclosure of the property marriage or financial obligations of the other party
- Didn’t voluntarily and expressly waive, in writing, any right to disclosure of the property or financial obligations of the other party
- Didn’t have an adequate knowledge of the property or financial obligations of the other party.
As you may have guessed, going beyond a standard Florida prenuptial agreement form and consulting with a Boca Raton family lawyer before you take the leap is in your best interest.
Palm Beach Family Law Divorce Attorney Practice Areas Include:
Florida Prenuptial Agreements
Prenup Infidelity Clause
Florida Cohabitation Law
Florida Divorce Agreement