You have taken time to discuss and draft a prenuptial agreement before tying the knot. Well, congratulations. You have accomplished a feat that most couples overlook. A prenuptial agreement or simply a prenup, as it is commonly known, is an excellent way of protecting your financial assets should your marriage end in a divorce.
However, like any other legally binding contract, your prenuptial agreement may not mean anything when the need arises if it was improperly created. Of course, the court will not throw out your prenup just because either party feels it is unfair or regrets it. That said, some provisions can result in the agreement being invalidated.
Here are three common reasons why a prenuptial agreement can be invalidated.
Any contract signed under duress is illegal under Illinois law, and a prenuptial agreement is no different. The court will nullify your prenup agreement if it establishes that one party signed it under duress. For instance, if one party threatens to call off a marriage whose wedding has been fully paid for, then this could be deemed as duress. A prenup signed under such circumstances would be declared null or void.
A prenuptial agreement can be nullified if it is determined that it is one-sided or blatantly unfair that the court may wonder about the circumstances that lead to its creation and signing. This is termed as “unconscionable.” For instance, if the prenuptial agreement grants control of assets to one spouse during and after the marriage, while stripping the other spouse of a right to property division according to Illinois laws, then the court may nullify the contract on grounds of unconscionability.
A fraudulent prenup will definitely be nullified by the court. This can happen when one party withholds certain information while creating the agreement. For instance, if one party hides wealth while creating the agreement, it could be deemed both fraudulent and unusable.
A prenuptial agreement allows a couple to safeguard their financial interests before marriage. However, these are some of the reasons why a prenuptial agreement may be nullified.