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Pre-Nuptial & Post-Nuptial Agreements

“Pre-Nuptial Agreements,” also called “Ante-Nuptial Agreements,” are marital Agreements that are signed before the parties are married.  “Post-Nuptial Agreements” are Agreements that are signed after the parties are married.  In Michigan, both Pre-Nuptial and Post-Nuptial Agreements are valid and enforceable IF properly drafted.

Three key components to drafting an enforceable Pre-Nuptial or Post-Nuptial Agreement are: 1) Disclosure; 2) Valuation; and 3) Independent Representation.  “Disclosure” means the Agreement should itemize in detail all the major assets and debts of the parties that are in existence when the Agreement is signed.  “Valuation” means the Agreement should have approximate values and balances for all the listed assets and debts, and specify how those values were determined.  For example, if the parties use a certain appraisal to confirm the value of a house, that should be noted in the Agreement.  “Independent Representation” means each party should be represented by their own separate and independent lawyer when negotiating and signing the Agreement.  That lawyer should of course concentrate in Family Law.

Although Post-Nuptial Agreements are enforceable in Michigan, special care must be used when drafting them.  If a Post-Nuptial Agreement is too favorable to one side, such that they have an “incentive” or financial gain to divorce the other party, the Agreement may be held invalid.  To be valid, a Post-Nuptial Agreement cannot “encourage” a future divorce.  However, if the Post-Nuptial Agreement is signed after the parties have already separated, in anticipation of an imminent divorce, a different standard is applied.  One of the key cases addressing a Post-Nuptial Agreement that was signed after the parties had already separated is Lentz vs. LentzClick here for a link to the Lentz case.

Attorney Matt Catchick has concentrated in Family Law for over 17 years.  He has extensive experience drafting both Pre-Nuptial and Post-Nuptial Agreements.  If you are about to get married and want to protect your assets, or if you are already married and want to confirm how you and your spouse will divide your property, Matt can draft a proper Agreement to maximize enforceability in Court.  Call or email Matt today for a free initial office consultation to discuss how Matt can help you save what you worked hard to earn.

Catchick Law, PC. Personal service. Proven results.


(248) 606-5522

29829 Greenfield Road, Suite 101
Southfield, MI 48076

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Matt Catchick

Attorney Matt Catchick founded Catchick Law, PC to provide the highest levels of client service and legal representation in the areas of Divorce and Family Law, Criminal Defense, Driver License Restoration, and Traffic Tickets.
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