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How a postnuptial agreement can actually complicate your divorce

Postnuptial agreements, also known as marital agreements, have become more common in recent years as couples seek to protect their assets in case of a potential divorce. Like most such agreements, they are usually made as a "just in case" failsafe – after all, few people are contemplating the eventuality of divorce during the first bloom of marriage.

While a marital agreement may seem like a simple way to cover your bases and guarantee a simple division of assets should you get divorced, it may actually lead to greater complications when a marriage ends.

More mistakes are made when drafting pre- and postnuptial agreements than anyone would care to realize. If your agreement is unfairly weighted in favor of your spouse, it is likely that it will not be enforced when your marriage ends. If your agreement was improperly drafted by an attorney, leaving you exposed to financial hardship, their negligence may constitute grounds to file a professional malpractice lawsuit. And if the agreement was not entered into willingly by both parties – for instance, if one partner was pressured or bullied into signing against their wishes – then its validity can be challenged by your attorney.

While a marital agreement can limit your options during a divorce, they are rarely bulletproof; an experienced divorce attorney can assess your agreement and tell you whether it can be challenged during divorce proceedings. While this may complicate matters, a competent, effective attorney will be able to address any issues quickly and efficiently, protecting your interests without unnecessarily elongating the divorce process.

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