You often hear legal experts say that you should enter into a prenuptial agreement prior to your marriage in Clinton Township. Such advice is sound, as it protects both you and your spouse financially. Yet at the same time, many view them as being in poor taste given that prenuptial agreements leave open the possibility that marriages will end (which is likely something neither you nor your spouse wants to contemplate). Plus, you may have also heard that married couples can create postnuptial agreements. Many come to us here at The Law Office of Lorrie J. Zahodnic, P.C. asking if this is true. The answer we offer is often not what they were expecting.
Michigan state court rulings have established that property and asset distribution agreements entered into by couples that are still married are not valid. The exact reason why was detailed in 2008 state Court of Appeals case. In it, the Court noted "...under Michigan law, a couple that is maintaining a marital relationship may not enter into an enforceable contract that anticipates and encourages a future separation or divorce." Even if you and your spouse consent to the terms of a proposed postnuptial agreement, it is viewed as unenforceable given that alludes to you potentially getting a divorce.
This is not to say, however, that you and your spouse cannot come to some sort of mutual agreement that offers similar protections to a prenuptial agreement after you have been married. If such an agreement is struck following a separation, state courts may view it as a valid settlement agreement and thus respect your wishes. More information on property division provisions can be found throughout our site.