For some Arizona couples who are thinking about getting married, a prenuptial agreement can be an important part of their planning, particularly when one or both will be bringing valuable assets into the marriage. However, in order for this agreement to be enforced in a subsequent divorce, it must meet certain requirements.
Arizona law sets forth certain requirements and conditions in order for a prenuptial agreement to be legally enforceable. One of these requirements is that the agreement must be in writing and both parties must sign it.
The agreement will not be enforced by a court if one of several conditions is present. One of these is when one party did not enter into the agreement voluntarily or there was some kind of coercion present. If the agreement is considered to be unconscionable, this will preclude its enforcement. Generally, unconscionability has to do with one of the parties not fully disclosing all of his or her assets or financial condition, with the other party not having prior knowledge of those matters. The other party could waive this disclosure, but it would have to be voluntary and in writing. Another issue with prenuptial agreements comes when the agreement provides for very little or no spousal support in the event of a subsequent divorce. If the party who would otherwise be entitled to receive alimony is forced to go on a public assistance program, the court may modify the agreement to the extent necessary to avoid the need for such assistance.
Gaining an understanding all of the factors that govern a prenuptial agreement can be difficult without the guidance of a family law attorney who has experience in these matters. It is recommended that should such an agreement be considered, each party should have separate legal representation to review its terms before it is signed.
Source: Arizona state legislature, “Chapter 3 DISSOLUTION OF MARRIAGE“, January 06, 2015