For many individuals -- whether they have important assets or children that they are trying to protect -- a prenuptial agreement can be an essential tool to utilize before entering into a marriage. However, it may surprise some in Alabama to learn that these agreements are not necessarily airtight. After a divorce, a prenuptial agreement can actually be challenged for a number of reasons.
When petitioning to have a prenup thrown out, the question of how and when it was signed may arise. Details concerning the circumstances of its signing are of particular importance as they might indicate that one party was placed under undue duress before signing. For example, a prenuptial agreement signed right before a marriage might be a sign of a spouse who felt pressured to sign rather than cancel a wedding for which they had already shelled out a substantial amount of non-refundable money.
A judge may also consider one of the most basic aspects of a prenup -- the division of assets. Depending on events that occur over the course of a marriage, a previous arrangement made for assets or even alimony may no longer be reasonably fair. If rights to a reasonable post-divorce settlement have been compromised due to what a prenup dictates, the affected individual can request that the settlement be put aside.
When used properly, a prenuptial agreement can be an invaluable aspect of an Alabama couple’s premarital planning. However, prenups that leave one spouse without their fair share from the marriage or that were signed under questionable circumstances might leave some wondering what their next step is. Others may even later discover that their significant other failed to disclose important finances before the prenuptial agreement was signed. It is possible for the affected spouse to petition a judge overseeing the divorce case to have the prenuptial agreement set aside during divorce proceedings.
Source: The Huffington Post, "When a Prenup Gets Thrown Out", Stann Givens, July 7, 2014