High net worth divorces: What could invalidate a prenuptial agreement

Many couples, wealthy and not so wealthy, are taking advantage of the benefits that a solid prenuptial agreement can provide. When completed correctly, a prenup can protect your business, establish in writing your financial rights and preserve your assets.

In a high net worth divorce, a prenup is invaluable in helping the couple achieve a fair and balanced final settlement. However, not all prenuptial agreements are perfect and may fail to provide proper protection. In some cases, a prenup may even be deemed invalid by a Massachusetts or New Hampshire court.

If you are going through a high net worth divorce with a prenuptial agreement in place, look over your document for signs that it might not be valid. Common provisions that can make your document unsound include the following.

  • If one spouse was coerced into signing the document, it might be invalid.
  • If the agreement contains any information that was false at the time of signing, a court may dismiss the document.
  • If the agreement attempts to address child support, it will not hold up in court.
  • If the document contains what is known as unconscionable provisions, it might be invalid.

To make this last item as clear as possible, an example of an unconscionable provision that is so “grossly unfair” that it leaves a spouse facing severe and significant financial hardships. Most family courts across the nation refuse to validate a prenup or a provision that leaves one party in such poor financial circumstances.

Prenuptial agreements are important when a high net worth divorce is on the table. A well-drafted prenup may also help facilitate your divorce when it is time to divide your marital property.


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