The main purpose of a prenuptial agreement is to determine how finances will be divided in the event of a divorce. And so, full financial disclosure is necessary to make a prenuptial agreement valid. Follow along to find out why financial disclosure is required and how one of the proficient Bergen County prenuptial agreement attorneys at McNerney & McAuliffe can help you in legitimizing yours.
Why is financial disclosure necessary for a prenuptial agreement?
One of the main facets necessary for a prenuptial agreement to be considered valid by the New Jersey family court is financial disclosures by you and your soon-to-be spouse. This is because the court believes that each party should be made fully aware of the financial agreement that they are entering into before signing. The assets that you and your spouse may have to disclose in your prenuptial agreement include the following:
- The real estate that both you and your spouse own (i.e., residential home, vacation home, rental home, etc).
- The vehicles that both you and your spouse own (i.e., automobiles, motorcycles, boats, etc).
- The bank accounts and savings accounts that both you and your spouse own.
- The stocks, bonds, and mutual funds that both you and your spouse own.
- The patents, trademarks, and copyrights that both you and your spouse own.
- The businesses and professional interests that both you and your spouse own.
In the event that you or your spouse fail to disclose all of your assets, your prenuptial agreement will be determined invalid. And so, in the event of a divorce, the court will not refer back to these clauses when making their judgments. Instead, they will look at a number of factors established by state law, such as the following:
- The amount that both you and your spouse contributed to the marital property.
- The tax consequences that come with the marital property.
- The economic status of both you and your spouse.
What else is necessary for a prenuptial agreement?
In addition to the financial disclosure, you and your spouse must also ensure that your prenuptial agreement meets the following criteria in order to be considered valid:
- It must be in writing.
- It must be notarized.
- It must be considered fair and just by both you and your spouse.
- It must be voluntarily signed by both you and your spouse.
- It must be executed before your marriage.
What should I do if I believe that my spouse did provide financial disclosure?
If you believe that your spouse purposely hid assets so as to not include them in your prenuptial agreement or to not have them considered in the equitable distribution process, then you must speak out. This is because such action can be considered fraudulent, and thus comes with certain repercussions.
You can better make this determination by, firstly, hiring a forensic accountant for your legal proceedings. In the end, you should not go forward without hiring a talented Bergen County equitable distribution attorney. Call to retain our services today.