It used to be that “prenup” was a dirty word. It was largely taboo to think a marriage may not last forever. And the people who went ahead and used them anyway all seemed to be the extraordinarily rich.
Times have changed. Societal views on marriage and divorce have shifted. The laws for divorce have changed. And the prenup has grown in popularity, especially among millennials.
A growing trend
When it explored the recent rise of the prenup, Business Insider cited two possible explanations for its surging popularity:
- Millennials are getting married later in life than previous generations. This means they spend more time working and building up their assets before tying their lives together. As a result, they have more assets to protect.
- Many millennials have parents who divorced. They’re under no illusion that marriage is always forever. This makes them more likely to see the practical value of the prenup, rather than get tripped up by stigmas.
Because more couples are getting prenups, it’s more important than ever to understand when the court will enforce a prenup and when the prenup’s no good.
Four ways to challenge a bad prenup
As the courts view them, prenups are basically a form of business contract. They’re special mostly because the business in question is the business of marriage—and any following property division.
A good prenup can help you protect your financial future, especially if you’re a business owner. But a bad prenup may put your whole future at risk. If any of these situations apply to you, you should consider challenging your prenup in court:
- You only signed under duress.
- You never received a full and truthful summary of assets.
- The terms are blatantly unfair—or “unconscionable”—and could cause you harm.
- Certain terms fall outside the realm of what a prenup can address. For example, prenups may not address child support or custody.
If the court decides the prenup is no good, it can toss it out. You can press for a more equitable settlement.
Take a stand
You need evidence and a solid strategy to challenge a prenup, but you cannot afford to let a bad prenup destroy your future. You deserve a fair start to your life’s next chapter.