Now I’m not saying she’s a Gold Digger, no really I’m not… I just think it is prudent to discuss a prenup.  I know what you are thinking a Prenup is a sign of distrust, not love.  Also that it is only for movie stars and people of high wealth.  These are the common misconceptions that everyone has about prenuptial agreements.  In retrospect, drawing up a prenup together is a sign of incredible trust and financial openness.  In many cases, a prenup can increase marital happiness by providing surety in both marriage and divorce.

So what is a prenup you may be asking, is a contract between two individuals with plans to get married. It spells out the marital rights and responsibilities as well as the division of assets upon death or divorce.  It does not take effect until a couple marries – if this marriage never occurs the agreement is unenforceable.  

Prenups in North Carolina can cover a broad range of areas which define the rights and obligations during the marriage and upon divorce.  These could include right to spousal support, property ownership (in North Carolina any property acquired by a couple during marriage becomes jointly owned and subject to division upon divorce), debt repayment and so forth.  There are some limitations, specifically, a prenup cannot extinguish either spouse’s premarital debts nor can it infringe on the rights of the couples current or future children.

North Carolina follows the Uniform Prenuptial Agreement Act (UPAA), which establishes a requirement for prenuptial agreements.  Most importantly, the prenup must be in writing and signed by the future spouses.  An agreement won’t’ take effect until marriage, upon which the couple may change their minds and revise their prenup later on.  North Carolina merely requires that an amendment be in writing and signed by both parties.  

Prenuptial agreements are very complex.  It is essential that you consult an attorney before signing since it can affect your rights during marriage and long after divorce.  Before signing a prenup or if you have more questions regarding a prenup, you should contact Gonzalez Law Firm for more advice.