A Pre-Marital Agreement is a legally binding contract that can be entered into by parties who intend to marry. The contract is binding and enforceable once the parties marry. These legally binding contracts are meant to allow the parties prior to their marriage an opportunity to discuss how they wish to handle the business of their marriage. Pursuant to the North Carolina Pre-Marital Act, we are allowed to enter into legally binding contracts prior to a marriage of the parties concerning the rights of the parties in the event of a divorce or the death of one of the parties.
Many issues can be covered in a Pre-Marital Agreement. For example, (a) the parties can agree to the terms and conditions of how marital property will be divided, how separate property will be handled, how earnings during a marriage will be handled, and how people may fund retirements or investment accounts or a myriad of other issues relating to property that the parties may own prior to their marriage or may acquire during their marriage; (b) it allows the parties to define exactly what their separate property is upon their date of marriage by listing this in your Pre-Marital Agreement; it also allows you to plan for what you may wish to happen with that property to protect other family members that the parties may have at the time of a marriage; (c) it allows the party to waive alimony or spousal support or set out requirements therefor; (d) it allows you to define inheritance rights of parties and change what the statutory requirements may be; (e) allow the parties to create obligations between themselves; (f) allow the parties to define what will happen in the event of a divorce or separation of the parties.
We can tailor a Pre-Marital Agreement to fit your situation as long as the same is done a substantial length of time prior to the marriage of the parties and the transaction is done at arms’ length. Please know that Pre-Marital Agreements cannot create binding child custody provisions.