In Indiana, marriage contracts are called “prenuptial contracts.” These types of contracts are defined by Indiana law as an agreement that “is signed in return for the marriage and becomes effective with the marriage.” To be valid, a prenuptial agreement must be in writing and signed by both parties; However, unlike other contracts, no consideration is required. They need a clear and concise marriage contract, with no room for misinterpretation. What are the legal requirements for a marriage contract? In general, there are few legal requirements for a marriage contract that go beyond what is required for a general contract. However, there are a few differences. First, a prenuptial marriage must be written and signed by both parties.2 Second, a key aspect that distinguishes a prenuptial agreement from a “regular” contract is the concept of “consideration.” Consideration basically means that each party gives up something to get something different. For example, if A and B enter into a purchase agreement, A gives money to B to get B`s product, and B gives up the product to get A`s money. However, prenuptial agreements do not require anything in return.3 For example, if A enters the marriage with $2 million in assets, B has nothing, and the prenuptial agreement provides that A can keep all of his $2 million in divorce, the contract is not unenforceable simply because A does not “waive” anything. Warning: These codes may not be the latest version. Indiana may have more up-to-date or accurate information. We make no warranties or representations as to the accuracy, completeness or suitability of the information contained on this website or the information linked to the government website.
Please check the official sources. While prenuptial agreements can cover a variety of issues, the best way to ensure that this is valid and enforceable is to consult with a lawyer before executing them. If you`re interested in drafting or reviewing a marriage contract in Indiana, it`s best to speak to an experienced family law attorney in the state. Get advice from a professional and experienced lawyer when drafting a marriage contract. They can ensure that the rights of you and your spouse are protected and that the contract is consolidated. Again, make sure you get separate legal representation for you and your partner. This will strengthen the agreement because it is obvious that the contract represents you and your spouse fairly. Avoid prenuptial agreement mistakes before they occur. Contact a qualified family law lawyer who can help you through the process. In 1995, Indiana passed the Uniform Premarital Agreement Act and codified it in the Indiana Code as Title 31, Chapter 3.
As with any other contract, if the marriage contract was legal in Indiana, it is enforceable in other states. Marriage contracts are not just for the rich. A marriage is a document or set of documents that determine what a divorce court must do in the divorce of the parties to a divorce application if they separate their assets and liabilities. These contracts give the parties the flexibility to agree on the terms in the event of a divorce application. In addition, in the event of divorce, they offer security with regard to the division of property. First, as an example, Indiana is not a strong alimony state. With the exception of disability or alimony of up to three years to gain professional skills, an Indiana divorce court cannot order child support or “alimony.” This is something that could be very important for a spouse who does not have opportunities to earn money or who stays out of the workforce for a long time. This spouse could apply for a marriage contract that provides for long-term alimony to protect him. He will know, in addition to insolvency, that in the event of divorce, a certain amount of maintenance will be paid for months or years.
Second, prenuptial agreements may give the parties some certainty in unique circumstances. For example, a spouse often has large family inheritances or a family business that he wants to make sure to stay out of the “marital pot” of assets to be shared. Usually, these agreements determine how money and property acquired during marriage is classified (i.e. . B as common property or property separated from each spouse) and identify the property that each spouse brings into the marriage. Although often discussed in the context of divorce, a prenuptial agreement can also describe the responsibilities and rights of each spouse during marriage. Like most states, Indiana uses the Uniform Prenuptial Agreement Act (UPAA) to determine the applicability of marriage contracts. This joint plan sets out several rules under which the court can determine whether a marriage contract is enforceable or, alternatively, whether a person of the former couple has violated the contract and has therefore declared it null and void. If you and your partner decide to enter into a marriage contract before you get married in Indiana, you should know that this decision comes with important legal considerations. The basis of a well-established marriage contract should address issues that would arise only in the case of legal separation or divorce, in particular in the case of a State-specific marriage regime that could have an impact on that phenomenon in the case of marriage.
It should include the transfer of property as well as property rights to both parties. Whether you come from a wealthy background or not, a marriage contract is a good idea. A marriage contract can protect property in the event of divorce. Avoid these common mistakes to make sure your prenuptial agreement fully protects your rights and those of your partner. Many couples struggle with the idea of a marriage contract, and that`s understandable. Prenuptial agreements are often seen as an indicator that the partner requesting the agreement is not so tied to the relationship and ultimately expects a divorce. Marriage contracts are also often seen as a sign of greed. This can mean a reluctance to share a busy life with each other, which is considered contrary to the central belief of marriage. The lack of scruples, as justified by the non-respect of a marriage contract that excludes the granting of spousal support, implies a flagrant inequality.4 The disparity in this sense means a difference in bargaining power between the future spouses. Things like wealth, business acumen, free exchange of information, education, language comprehension, a lawyer, etc.
all go in the direction of the concept of inequality between the parties. The question therefore arises as to what best practices can be applied, especially those who want prenuptial agreements because they bring significant assets into a marriage to avoid declaring a prenuptial agreement inapplicable in the background when filing for divorce.5 Here are some suggestions: The validity of your prenuptial agreement depends on the language used in the agreement. You cannot expect the court to apply a particular provision if it is not clear. An experienced lawyer can create a marriage contract with the right terminology. This ensures that the marriage contract is as accurate and precise as possible. It is important to read current laws, but legal language can be difficult for most people to understand because it is written in legal jargon. For this reason, it may be useful to also read an overview of the statutes. The following table provides an overview of Indiana`s marriage contract laws and links to relevant regulations.
While the technical legal requirements are minimal, there are many best practices to avoid making a prenuptial agreement unenforceable. The only legal requirements for a marriage contract are that it be written and signed by both parties. However, the analysis doesn`t stop there. Prenuptial agreements are often challenged once the divorce has been filed because one of the parties feels they were much worse off than the other. This is the concept of “lack of scruples”. Indiana Code § 31-11-3-8 provides the following in a relevant part: It is important to work with the help of experienced attorneys to create a fair and impartial marriage contract. An experienced lawyer will know what to include in the marriage contract and not include, so that he not only represents both parties fairly, but also respects the law. If this agreement contains scandalous provisions that favour one party, this may discredit the whole agreement. Here are common examples of outrageous regulations: This blog post was written by lawyers from Ciyou & Dixon, P.C., who cover the entire spectrum of domestic matters, from prenuptial agreements to divorces to appeals. We hope he has provided you with useful information to understand the full range of rights and remedies under Indiana`s divorce law. This blog is not a solicitation of specific legal services or legal advice.