One of the biggest mistakes that people make when trying to create a prenuptial agreement before they get married is to include things that the courts will simply never uphold. Illegal or unethical provisions can directly influence the likelihood of your prenup standing up to a challenge in court.
If you familiarize yourself with some of the more common inappropriate inclusions in a prenuptial agreement, you can potentially help yourself avoid the consequences of including those terms, such as the courts throwing out the whole document and refusing to uphold it during a divorce.
Don’t include provisions about child custody or support
Knowing that custody and financial support are often two of the most contested issues in divorce might make you think that addressing those topics in a prenup would be smart. However, you have no way of knowing how your family will grow and change over the years. Courts won’t recognize an agreement made years before you even conceived a child.
Don’t include intimate or personal terms
We’ve all heard about celebrities who included financial penalties for one spouse gaining weight during the marriage in a prenup or even someone demanding certain behavior or treatment from their spouse in their contract.
The courts are very unlikely to uphold personal terms in a legal contract. Whether the issue involves how someone dresses or how frequently the two of you are intimate, that is not something that the courts will want to enforce or address during a divorce.
It’s usually best to focus the content of the agreement on your financial circumstances, such as earmarking property as your separate property. Financial agreements are the whole purpose of a prenup and are among the clauses most likely to be upheld by the courts during a divorce. An experienced family law attorney can provide valuable guidance as you work out a prenup with your spouse-to-be.