Postnuptial Agreements in NY

Not only is marriage about romance, but it also a partnership with legal consequences. A postnuptial agreement can establish the duties of each spouse and how assets are distributed after a divorce, providing clarity and security throughout the marriage. 

Similar to a prenuptial agreement, a postnuptial agreement is a written contract that is valid after a couple gets married, rather than before the wedding. In New York, the agreement is enforceable if the contract is signed and notarized, the provisions within the contract are fair for both parties, and each spouse has legal representation to create the document and ensure fairness. 

A postnuptial agreement can address the following issues: 

  • Define marital and separate property – While separate property consists of assets each spouse brings into a marriage, marital property includes assets obtained by the couple during the marriage. A postnuptial agreement can specify which assets are marital or separate property and how they are distributed in the event of a divorce. 

  • Establish pre-marriage debt – If one spouse is bringing significant debt into the marriage, the agreement can state the debt remains with that spouse when a divorce occurs. 

  • Establish spousal support – A postnuptial agreement can determine the amount and duration of alimony or spousal maintenance one spouse will receive if the marriage ends. 

  • Provide for children from a previous relationship – If a spouse brings kids from a prior relationship into the marriage and the other spouse does not adopt them, a postnuptial agreement can ensure those children are provided for upon a divorce. 

The document cannot be entered through fraud, coercion, or duress. Additionally, the agreement cannot contain provisions on child custody, visitation, and child support related to minor children since New York judges can only decide such matters based on the children's best interests. 

If you and your spouse are interested in creating a postnuptial agreement in Brooklyn, contact Arnel Law Firm today at (718) 550-3024 for a free initial consultation. More than 35 years of family law experience!