Sometimes the biggest issue with a prenuptial agreement when a party seeks to invoke it in a New Jersey divorce is with that contract itself.
And the reason comes down to a single word: enforceability.
A New Jersey judge will closely weigh in on that, with it being important for any individual executing such an agreement to note that courts routinely subject prenups (indeed, all marital contracts) to exacting scrutiny. Although that shouldn’t present a problem for a contract that was fairly negotiated and carefully drafted, it can result in an agreement that is frowned upon by a judge being summarily tossed.
We note on our website at the Somerville Law Office of Rajeh A. Saadeh that our practiced legal team routinely negotiates, drafts and reviews premarital agreements for our valued family law clients. We further point out that, “We have litigated such contracts when they turned out to be inherently fraudulent or unfair.”
It is that potential for a prenup to be less than aboveboard and equitable that regularly invites a court’s careful evaluation. A number of factors can invoke judicial concern, including matters like the following:
- Sloppily written or inexact document that does not tightly conform with all the legal requirements mandated in the state where written or sought to be enforced
- Evidence that one of the signatories was somehow coerced or under duress
- Clauses that are problematic for being grossly unfair, illegal or flatly against public policy
- One of the parties disadvantaged by not having legal counsel
When fairly negotiated and properly written, a prenup can serve as a powerful tool to legitimately address important matters relative to assets, income and related considerations.
The key lies in enforceability. A knowledgeable divorce attorney with hands-on experience negotiating and drafting marital contracts can help ensure that a prenup or postmarital contract passes judicial scrutiny.