A marriage contract, more commonly referred to as a prenuptial agreement or “prenup”, is a contract made between a couple prior to their marriage. These agreements outline certain details about the couple’s finances and other logistics following the potential breakdown of the relationship.
Prenups can be an effective way to protect your assets and interests in the event of a breakdown of the relationship, and address various marital issues including spousal support obligations. They can also serve to avoid conflict and litigation after separation by clearly outlining, in advance, many of the issues that separating couples commonly battle over. At NULaw we have many years of experience advising clients on marriage agreements. Our goal is to protect your property and other assets, and mitigate any future risk you may face in the event of a marriage breakdown.
Prenups are applicable to same and opposite-sex married couples. A similar agreement is available for unmarried couples and is known as a cohabitation agreement.
Prenups should be drafted by a family lawyer prior to a marriage, and outline details and logistics that the individuals getting married agree upon. A prenup can include any number of things, but most commonly outline:
Prenups can also include what are known as “lifestyle clauses”, which are agreements about behaviour during and after marriage. Lifestyle clauses can include things such as division of chores or an agreement to maintain physical fitness.
It is important to note that prenups cannot address custody or access rights or limit a spouse’s possession rights to the matrimonial home.
A marriage contract can be entered into even after you are already married. Such agreements are known as post-nuptial agreements or postnups. Postnups function in the exact same way as prenups, can be used for the same purposes, and can include the same type of agreements made as between the spouses.
At NULaw in Toronto, we can review a pre-existing marriage agreement or draft a new agreement. We will also fight to enforce marriage contracts if necessary and help you secure what you are entitled to. We are dedicated to protecting you and your assets, and helping you plan for your new life. Contact us online or at 416-481-5604 to book a consultation.