Denver Premarital & Marital Agreements Attorney

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Denver Premarital & Marital Agreements Lawyer

Getting married comes with a wide range of details and responsibilities that a couple needs to consider, from financial matters to individual assets. Before getting married, many couples decide to create a marital agreement to help protect themselves and their future if, for some reason, they end up getting a divorce. Because almost half of the current marriages that occur in the United States ultimately end in divorce, more couples are deciding to create premarital and marital agreements to help give them some peace of mind for the future. If you are looking to create a premarital or marital agreement in Denver, Colorado, our team can help you draft a valid document that fits your unique circumstances.

The Woody Law Firm, LLC: Denver Premarital and Marital Agreement Lawyers

Premarital and marital agreements are becoming increasingly popular, especially here in Colorado. At the Woody Law Firm, LLC, our team of attorneys has decades of shared experience working in family law. This has allowed us to help countless clients with their unique needs, including couples looking to create premarital and/or marital agreements in and around Denver. Our team can work with you to create a premarital and/or marital agreement that suits your individual needs and provides you and your partner with some comfort for the future, as well as assist you throughout the legal process of it all. For help crafting a premarital and/or marital agreement that you can trust, see how our team of family law attorneys can assist you.

Denver Marital Agreements Attorney

What Is a Premarital Agreement?

Premarital agreements, otherwise known as prenuptial agreements, are legal documents created by couples to set out guidelines for their futures if they were to divorce. A premarital agreement is a legal contract that both partners enter into before they marry but become effective once they marry. It outlines how issues such as property division and alimony may be handled if the couple ends up separating. Because the future can be so unpredictable, many couples decide to draft prenups for their own peace of mind.

What Are the Requirements For A Premarital Agreement In Colorado?

In Colorado, there are a few requirements that must be met for a premarital agreement to be seen as legally valid:

  • The agreement must be written; it cannot be oral.
  • Both parties must sign the written agreement.
  • Both parties must enter into the agreement voluntarily, with no coercion involved.
  • The document must not be in violation of any Colorado law or public policy.
  • Both parties must disclose all necessary financial information.
  • Both parties must have access to independent legal representation.

What Is the Difference Between A Premarital Agreement and A Marital Agreement?

Although premarital and marital agreements are similar in that they share the same requirements to be legally valid, they also have key distinctions. First, and the most obvious, is the timing of the agreement. Marital agreements are entered into during the marriage (but before any contemplation of possible divorce), and it becomes immediately effective upon signing. Second, although marital agreements can address the same topics as premarital, they are typically more specific to a particular issue in the marriage.  Lastly, a marital agreement can be more difficult to hold up in court because there is a greater risk of spousal coercion to sign such an agreement after the couple is married.

The Advantages Of Working With A Premarital and Marital Agreements Attorney

When it comes to creating any type of premarital or marital agreement, it is in your best interest to work with an experienced family law attorney who can help you with the process. There are many advantages that come along with hiring a marital agreement attorney, like one of our team members here at the Woody Law Firm, LLC:

Ensure That Everything Is Done Legally

Creating a premarital or marital agreement comes with a variety of small, important details that all need to be addressed properly for the document to be valid. By hiring one of our lawyers, we can work with you to ensure that whatever kind of premarital or marital agreement you are creating follows all legal requirements. With our experience in family law, we know each issue that needs to be addressed and how to do so properly.

Help You Protect Your Own Interests

Premarital and marital agreements are made so that if a couple divorces in the future, both spouses have some form of protection for themselves and their assets. At the Woody Law Firm, LLC, we understand just how important it is to make sure that your agreement is fair and that it protects your own interests just as well as your spouse’s. We can work with you to outline whatever assets are meaningful to you and ensure an equitable outcome.

Create a Document Unique to Your Situation

Every premarital or marital agreement is unique to the couple creating it. This means that each agreement might address different topics or have different guidelines laid out. At the Woody Law Firm, LLC, we have handled a wide range of agreement cases and can ensure that you create one that works best for your individual circumstances. Whether you want to create a waiver of alimony or want to address multiple aspects of a potential property division, our lawyers are prepared to help.

What Can Be Addressed In A Premarital And Marital Agreement?

A premarital or marital agreement is used to address the common issues that arise when a couple divorces. The main aspects of these types of agreements often include:

Maintenance (Spousal Support)

While maintenance is not required to be addressed, it is often included in most of these agreements. This is because if the couple does not set up specific guidelines for spousal support in the case of a divorce, the decision of how much and for how long will ultimately be left up to the court following Colorado law guidelines. In an agreement, couples can address proposed maintenance payments for the future or sign a waiver of maintenance. If the couple decides to include a waiver of alimony, they both agree that neither spouse will receive spousal support if a divorce occurs.

Identifying Separate Property

Many couples decide to create a premarital agreement before marriage if they already have a great deal of their own separate property. This way, if a divorce happens, none of the property an individual owned before the marriage will be classified as marital property by accident, and it will not be subject to division. Many people like to keep their cars, bank accounts, and other important assets that they acquired before marriage under their own name so that they stay classified as separate property. A spouse can also unexpectedly inherit property during the marriage that they want to remain separate property, and creating a marital agreement could be useful in that circumstance.

Property and Debt Division

Property and debt division can be one of the most complicated aspects of a divorce. Because Colorado is not a community property state, it divides property through a method known as “equitable distribution.” Equitable distribution is a method of property division that is not necessarily 50/50 or equal, but instead must be fair after considering a multitude of relevant factors. If couple is unable to come to an agreement on property division during their separation negotiations then the court will have to take over dividing property equitably. Because of this, many couples create premarital or marital agreements to outline how property and debt division should take place if they separate. This way, they can avoid disputes and court costs in the future.

What is Unenforceable In A Premarital or Marital Agreement?

There are some topics that are unenforceable in Colorado premarital and marital agreements. These topics include:

  • Terms that adversely affect a child’s right to child support.
  • Terms that limit or restrict a remedy available to a domestic violence victim under Colorado law.
  • Terms that penalize a party for filing for legal separation or divorce.
  • Terms that violate public policy.

Also, any terms that define the rights or duties of the parties regarding their parental responsibilities can be considered by the court but are not binding.

Family Law Attorney FAQs

Q: What Is a Waiver of Maintenance?

A: A waiver of maintenance is a provision that can be included in these agreements that states a spouse is willingly giving up any claim to maintenance they might otherwise have. If a spouse does not have legal representation at signing of the agreement then the agreement needs to include a notice of waiver of this right or an explanation in plain language of the marital rights being waived.

Q: Can My Premarital or Marital Agreement Still Be Enforced in Colorado If It Was Created Out of State?

A: Well, it depends. The first question we would ask is does the agreement have a “choice of law” provision? If so, then then Colorado can interpret and enforce the agreement in accordance with that state’s laws if the state has a significant relationship to the agreement and the designated law is not contrary to a fundamental public policy of Colorado. If your agreement does not have a ”choice of law” provision then it has to be valid under Colorado’s laws to be enforceable. If you have concerns about your premarital or marital agreement, especially concerning any provisions that may not be allowed under Colorado law, you should contact an expert Denver marital agreement attorney.

Q: Can a Premarital or Marital Agreement Be Oral Instead of Written in Colorado?

A: No. One of the main requirements for both premarital and marital agreements is that they must be in writing and voluntarily signed by both partners involved. If you have an unwritten agreement, you should consult a Denver family law attorney who is an expert in Colorado family law.

Q: Can I Write My Own Premarital or Marital Agreement Without a Lawyer in Colorado?

A: Technically, an individual can draft their own premarital or marital agreement without a lawyer. However, if the other spouse decides to use an attorney, then you will most likely be required to have your own, or the agreement may be viewed as unfair or coerced. Working with an experienced marital agreement lawyer can also help ensure that you create a valid document that follows the state requirements.

Denver Premarital and Marital Agreement Attorney

It is never a bad idea to consider drafting a premarital or marital agreement, whether you are thinking about getting married or already are. At the Woody Law Firm, LLC, our team is dedicated to helping our clients through family law matters, such as creating marital agreements, here in Denver. We understand that marriages can come with a great deal of responsibility and oftentimes worry about the future, which is why we help our clients craft marital agreements that can bring them some comfort for years to come. To learn more about our services or our team, contact us today for more information.

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