Prenuptial agreements are documents designed to protect one or both party’s interests should a divorce occur. This document is drawn up by a lawyer and signed by both parties before the marriage takes place. This is a legally enforceable document that protects each or one party’s assets.
Prenuptial agreements are not valid in Quebec. Instead, Quebec residents can opt to have a marriage contract which must be signed before a notary and involves choosing a matrimonial regime which outlines the economic relationship between the parties.
Why Would I Need a Prenup?
- This type of agreement is commonly used when one of the parties entering a marriage has significantly more assets than the other.
- They may be used to protect family heirlooms, property or other assets, valuable or invaluable that one person wishes to keep in his or her family line in the event of a divorce.
- A prenuptial may be used to protect the interests of children from previous marriages.
- If one party was a business or home owner prior to the marriage.
What Will My Lawyer Need?
Your lawyer will need all of your financial statements including property holdings, assets, debts, etc. Both parties will be required to supply this information. It is best to come to an agreement on this document and any conditions or terms included in it before meeting your lawyer.
- Both parties must disclose all assets and liabilities. The agreement may be rendered useless if any hidden assets are discovered to have not been disclosed.
- Both parties must agree to the terms and conditions of the agreement.
- The document must be signed and witnessed by both parties before the marriage is legalized.
- The prenuptial agreement must be fair and not leave one party with undue hardship.
- There should be no frivolous provisions or demands.