Drafting Prenuptial and Postnuptial Agreements in Pennsylvania
November 11, 2012

Every couple has different concerns, and many enter into prenuptial or postnuptial agreements for different reasons. You may want to protect your interests, and allow your spouse to protect his or hers, by entering into a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement that outlines each party’s rights and entitlements in the event of divorce or death. The only difference between the two types of agreements is the timing, whether it is entered into before the marriage or after the marriage begins.

Pennsylvania law, 23 Pa.C.S.A. § 3106, defines a “premarital agreement” or “prenuptial agreement” as “an agreement between prospective spouses made in contemplation of marriage and to be effective upon marriage.” A prenuptial agreement permits one spouse to limit the rights and obligations of the other spouse should the parties separate or divorce.

A party seeking to invalidate a premarital agreement under Pennsylvania law, 23 Pa.C.S. § 3106, must prove that the other spouse either did not execute the agreement voluntarily, or that prior to execution of the agreement, the party was not provided (i) a fair and reasonable disclosure of the property or financial obligations of the other party; (ii) did not voluntarily and expressly waive, in writing, any right to disclosure of the property or financial obligations of the other party beyond the disclosure provided; and (iii) did not have an adequate knowledge of the property or financial obligations of the other party.

Like any other contract, prenuptial and postnuptial agreements are enforceable and will usually be honored by a Court unless a party presents clear and convincing evidence of fraud, misrepresentation or duress. For that reason, it is important that any prenuptial or postnuptial agreement be drafted so that it cannot be interpreted in a way that you did not intend.

The Harrisburg Family Law team at Daley Zucker regularly represents clients seeking to enter into or to challenge the enforceability of these agreements, and can assist you. Contact us to learn how our attorneys can help you.


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