If you are engaged (or are already married) and want to ensure that you have a mutual understanding of certain obligations or specific divisions are in place, should something go awry in your marriage, then a Premarital Agreement (also known as a Prenuptial Agreement) or a Postnuptial Agreement may be the best option. These types of Agreements should not be viewed as an act of bad faith or distrust, but rather, a way to ensure that both parties have a clear understanding and mutual agreement as to how finances and other non-child-related matters will be handled in the event of a separation and divorce. Jennifer R. Ward, Esquire was an active public speaker on this topic, including a matrimonial-related lecture series at The Latin School of Chicago Adult Education Program.
This is a legally binding contract that the parties enter into prior to their marriage. It defines and details the parties agreement as to how financial and other non-child-related matters will be handled if and when the marriage ends, either by divorce or the death of one of the parties. There are a few requirements as to what must be contained in a Premarital Agreement, but generally, all of the terms contained in a Premarital Agreement are determined and mutually agreed upon by both parties. Preparing a Premarital Agreement allows parties to openly discuss any issues they think should or should not be included in the agreement, reach compromises as to any issues or concerns, and receive detailed explanations from their respective counsels regarding the provisions contained in the Agreement. As with any other contract, all terms of a Premarital Agreement must be agreed upon by both parties. If one of the parties was coerced, under duress, involuntarily signed, or otherwise executed the prenuptial agreement under false pretenses, it may not be enforceable to that end.
This is a written agreement that the parties enter into after they are married. Married couples may elect to enter into a Postnuptial Agreement for the same reasons as parties entering into a Premarital Agreement, or when they wish to provide for a specific division of assets or the fulfillment of certain obligations in the event of dissolution of marriage or death.
Both types of these agreements allow parties to openly discuss financial matters between them so that each has a clear understanding and expectation concerning their financial rights and obligations, both during the marriage and in the event of a divorce or the death of one of the spouses. It is important to note that issues of child support and parenting time cannot be incorporated into either of these agreements.
Contact WARD FAMILY LAW, LLC, today to schedule an appointment to have your desired agreement drafted.
It was quick and easy and those are two words I did not think I would say about my divorce. We are still friendly too. We just were not meant to be together anymore. Ward Family Law made sure to draft the documents with the terms that we agreed on which kept us on good terms and there was no fighting. I cannot recommend them enough if you are looking for a clean, honest, quick, easy divorce.
We were set to get married in a little over a month and my family insisted on a premarital agreement. On my very first call Jennifer explained the entire process and timing. They hit the ground running and got everything completed and signed well before our wedding date. That made everything much less stressful so I thank them so much for their professionalism and timeliness.
Our plan was to get married after the baby was born and then a year later we still were not married and we were going our separate ways. I had no idea that the birth certificate alone did not make me the legal parent of our baby in Illinois. Luckily, Ward Family Law handles these cases and established paternity through a DNA test and submitted the results to the court. We now have an agreement on time with our kids and support too.
Cannot recommend Jennifer, Emily and the entire team at Ward Family Law enough. If you have a divorce, custody or other family law matter then stop looking. They will have your back until the end. While my case was messy, they kept it on track and brought it through to the end. It was the best that I could have hoped for.
We already split up all our accounts and had no debt. We just needed the paperwork for the divorce. We started it on our own and then realized just how complicated it all was and needed to make sure it would get accepted by the divorce court. In came Jennifer and she explained the "friendly" divorce process that they oftentimes do and that allowed us to get it all done on our terms and fast.
When our child graduated high school I needed a lawyer to file papers to stop my child support payments and to figure out how we were going to pay for college. Jennifer at Ward Family Law got everything together and filed with the court. From start to finish it was smooth and by filing at the right time my child support payments did not continue for months and months. That saved me so much money - enough to cover the retainer in the first place. Well worth it to do it right
My kid was graduating high school and I needed to end my child support obligation and also needed to get money for college costs and expenses. While these are two different things, the attorneys at Ward Family Law handled the court filings and had the right order entered by the Judge terminating my child support obligation and then also got a contribution order entered for college costs and expenses. What a relief and I cannot say enough good things about the family law team.
I wanted a legal team that could do it all since I didn't know which way it would go. I was unsure about mediation, settlement, or litigation and my research showed that they could do it all. They did. Mediation was guided by my attorney, Jennifer, at Ward Family Law and although it was not a great outcome it was because the other side would not compromise. No problem. Jennifer transitioned the case to litigation to push for what I knew was right and what I knew I needed to fight for. We fought the good fight for my kids…
I am already a very anxious person. Ward Family Law walked me through the process and was with me every step of the way. Emily is patient and communicative. She would call or email me back the same day and made sure I was comfortable. The divorce was a difficult time but she made it so much better and I couldn't be happier about the outcome.
We were getting married in a month and needed to get our premarital agreement done quickly but also done right. Ward Family Law got us a list of talking points for me and my fiance to figure out what we wanted included and they walked me through the financial disclosures and other things that have to get done to make sure the premarital agreement is valid. Otherwise, what is the point, right? They did the draft of the premarital agreement and since we had talked through it with their guidance prior it made the entire process so easy. Highly recommend!!
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