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Specialty tag(s): Prenuptial and Postnuptial Agreements

What Can You Do With a Prenuptial Agreement in Texas?

Aimee Pingenot Key | March 12, 2024

The modern premarital agreement can often be the secret to a stronger, happier marriage. Creating prenuptial agreements in Texas can provide couples with the opportunity to work together and talk about hard issues, like their finances, independent estates, and what they want to form together, before they get married. Having a prenup agreement in Texas encourages couples to sit down and have constructive conversations about what their future looks like together financially before they enter into marriage, which can save a lot of heartache and difficult conversations in the long run. If a marriage ends in divorce, a clear framework has been laid out to guide dissolution in a concrete and cost-efficient manner.

What Does a Prenup Cover?

 A premarital agreement is a contract entered into by spouses before marriage. It helps to define how assets and debts are treated and divided during the marriage, at divorce, or in death. Under the Texas Uniform Premarital Agreement Act, valid prenuptial agreements in Texas can include:

  • The spouses’ rights to use and transfer property
  • The spouses’ rights and obligations regarding any property they acquire
  • The disposition of property in the event the spouses’ marriage ends due to divorce or death

However, that is not all a prenuptial agreement in Texas can cover. In addition to property and financial terms, a Texas prenup can also include the couple’s wishes related to:

  • Changing family names upon marriage
  • Who is financially responsible for certain expenses
  • The creation and use of joint bank accounts
  • Dispute resolution methods, such as marriage counseling
  • The effect of extramarital relationships in a divorce, such as property division

By working with an experienced family law attorney, you can tailor your premarital agreement in Texas to fit you and your future spouse, ensuring that it contains everything you need as a couple.

Who Should Get a Prenuptial Agreement?

Traditionally, a prenuptial agreement in Texas is thought of as being a tool for high-net-worth couples with a lot of assets. However, Texas prenuptial agreements have been modernized and are very important for almost anyone, especially for couples who have worked a long time to establish their own success before marriage. This can include couples with children from prior marriages or relationships, family businesses, or trusts that need to be understood and explained before entering into a marriage agreement.

It’s very important for couples entering into a prenuptial agreement in Texas to be willing to talk openly and honestly about their expectations, their estates, their concerns, and their visions of the future with their spouse so that they can create a prenup that works for both of them.

How Can I Ensure That My Prenuptial Agreement Is Enforceable in Texas?

For a prenup in Texas to be enforceable, it must not include provisions that violate public policy or implicate criminal culpability. If the couple has or plans on having children, the prenuptial agreement also cannot interfere with a child’s right to receive the necessary support from a parent, so a term that functions to impact child support cannot be enforced. By consulting an attorney experienced in prenuptial agreements, you can get the specifics about what is needed to ensure that your agreement is enforceable in the state of Texas.

Can I Change or Terminate My Prenuptial Agreement After Marriage?

Yes. A married couple can jointly amend or terminate an existing premarital agreement after marriage by entering into a subsequent postnuptial agreement, in writing, that disavows or alters the prenup. If you wish to enter into a new prenup after marriage in Texas, both parties have to agree, and the new agreement must be in writing.

Contact an Experienced Family Law Attorney for Help With Prenups in Texas

At Goranson Bain Ausley, we work closely with couples to help them draft a premarital agreement that is customized for their unique needs. It is best to start thinking about this well before you say “I do” and contact an experienced Goranson Bain Ausley family law attorney to learn about your options for a prenup in Texas. The more time that you and your future spouse have to talk about, envision, and create your future contract and relationship, the easier and more productive the process will be.

To learn more about prenuptial agreements in Texas, contact Aimee Pingenot Key at 214-612-7303.

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