You did not want a premarital agreement to start with, but your spouse insisted, and now you are worried that it will cause you trouble in your divorce. Your spouse created the contract to prevent you from having access to their assets and property. However, there is a way in which you can get a share of your rightful marital property. If you prove to the courts that the agreement is invalid, your divorce can proceed as if the premarital agreement never existed.
Invalidating the premarital agreement
A premarital agreement is enforceable as long as it complies with the requirements of the law in Texas. If your premarital agreement does not comply with the statute, the court will declare it invalid, and it won’t apply in your divorce. The court could nullify your premarital agreement if:
- You did not sign the agreement voluntarily. This includes signing it because you thought you wouldn’t get married if you did not sign it.
- You did not read or understand the agreement when you signed it. One situation in which this could happen is signing the agreement in a rush before the ceremony.
- At the time of the signing, you did not know the property and financial obligations of your spouse.
- Your spouse did not disclose all of their property and financial obligations to you before signing. For example, if your spouse had a vacation home and did not tell you about it before signing. You must not have waived, in writing, your right to disclosure of the property for this situation to invalidate the will.
- The agreement was not in writing and signed by both you and your spouse.
- The terms of the contract are unlawful or oppressive for you. For example, your spouse could not have determined who gets custody of your child upon divorce.
All of these situations compromise the validity of a premarital agreement. If one of those applies to you, you have the right to attack the agreement in the divorce proceedings. That way, you could get a share of the marital property and assets that your spouse intended to protect with the agreement, such as any income or property they acquired during the marriage.
Your right to fight back
You can claim the property you deserve by law if you prove that the premarital agreement is invalid. Some situations may be more challenging to prove than others. Still, if you achieve it, the court won’t apply the terms of the agreement in your divorce proceedings. Some of the property in the agreement may be lawfully yours, and that is why you have the right to fight for it in court if your premarital agreement is invalid.